Issue No. 75
Years of Service & Excellence
50 Years of Service www.stluciafocus.com www.stluciafocus.com
Advertising Specialties & Promotional Products * Special Events * Calendars
* Corporate Gifts * Holiday Give Aways
* Personal Diaries * Much More........
We’ll Put Your Name Upfront Tel: 758 453-1149 • Fax: 758 453-1290 P. O. Box 2003, John St, La Clery, Castries, St. Lucia
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
DIGICEL ONLINE BACK UP
Back up your data automatically online
Organisations store enormous amounts of data. However, many organisations and users do not back up their data on a regular basis because they don’t have the time, back up processes are too time consuming, or they simply forget to do so. The ramifications of a major data loss are so great that most companies that have the misfortune to experience it, don’t survive for more than six months afterwards. Business data is only as good as the back up system that is in place. That’s why it’s so critical to have a modern and dependable system in place to safeguard valuable business information. With Digicel Online Back Up, you can preserve and restore all of your files in a secure, offsite environment without a major capital investment. We even manage the setup and the maintenance for you, so you can concentrate on your business. Our Online Back Up solution offers the crucial protection you need to ensure the continuity of your business. Don’t leave your most valuable business assets vulnerable for another day. Why Digicel Online Back up Cost-effective with pay-as-you-go structure Ease of use Optimal business continuity Elimination of human error Scalability Largest private cloud in the region Data stored to Digicel’s Tier III data centre certified by the UpTime Institute 24/7 helpdesk provides continuous support
BusinessFocus May / Jun
BF May/Jun 2014
77. Scotiabank St. Lucia 50 Years of Service & Excellence
Business Tech 10. Digicel Closes Re-Financing Plan 12. Owners of Flow Eye US$100m Dividend
14. WhatsApp Driving Mobile Data Boom 16. Digicel Business a ‘Strategic Partner’ 18. Bahamas Liberalises Telecoms Sector From April 1
Money Matters 20. Investing: The Ultimate Balancing Act 22. ACCA Auditors Can Stop Waste of Taxpayers’ Money 24. NCB Accesses US$16 Million in Trade Financing from IFC 26. Sagicor Back in Black with a Profit of US$4.1m 27. Health & Wealth 28.
Economy & Trade Focus 32. Prime Minister Presents EC$1.25 Billion Budget to Parliament 36. Tens of Thousands of Jobs at Risk With Threat to IFCs 38. Bahamas to Build a New US$39m Trans-Shipment Port in Abaco 40. "Venture Capital Can Restore Regional Growth" 42. IMF: Latin America and the Caribbean in Low Gear in 2014 44. Trinidad Economy Experiencing Robust Growth
34. Business Spotlight
In The Know 52. Caribbean Finance Education Institute to be Established 54. Caribbean Urged to Strengthen Measures to Deal with Proceeds of Crime 56. Barbadian Entrepreneurs to Benefit from Angel Investor Network
102. Major Moves
60. SMA INAUGURAL REGIONAL CONFERFENCE ON MANUFACTURING
103. Events 2012
71. Youth in Focus
104. New Company Registrations BusinessFocus May / Jun |
A Time for Celebration and Reflection! This is a time to celebrate and reflect for many reasons. At AMS we celebrate the publication of our 75th edition of Business Focus St Lucia with this issue -making us the longest and most published Business Magazine in the region. We wish to thank our advertisers, contributors and all who have helped in making this a colourful and rewarding journey. We also wish to recognize our hard working staff for their efforts in taking each issue from concept through to the finished printed product. We look forward to bringing you Business Focus St Lucia for many more years. The St Lucia Manufacturers Association hosted its second Biennial Quality Awards with Lokesh Singh and increased number of local manufacturers raising their marks in the quality standards. Publisher/Managing Editor Congratulations to the many winners in the various categories and we wish them continued success. Kudos to Ms Paula Calderon for her tenure as President of the SMA over the years and best wishes to the new SMA President Mr Ronald Ramjattan and his team as they lead the SMA into the future. Scotiabank – who is featured in this issue celebrates 50 Years of banking operations in St Lucia. What a tremendous journey it has been for them and they have lots to celebrate along the way having touched the lives of so many across St Lucia as well as playing a pivotal role in the island’s development. Many a St Lucian have made a career with Scotiabank over the years and in this regard we wish to recognize and celebrate Mr Chester Hinkson as he proceeds into retirement after 47 years of service to Scotiabank. During his tenure he has achieved many firsts along the way including being the first St Lucian to be named Country Head of Scotiabank St Lucia operations. Chester has set very high personal standards both personally and professionally which need to be emulated and has served the bank, community and country with distinction. We wish him continued success in his post retirement initiatives. The 2014 St Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival has been hailed a success with many new initiatives and nationwide hosting of events to capacity audiences. Our celebrity Chef Nina Compton graced us with a visit and was endorsed as a National Tourism Ambassador and celebrated for her achievements including being the face of the new 2014 St Lucia Telephone Directory. The Prime Minister unveiled his 2014 national budget with plans to stimulate economic growth amid difficult domestic conditions. Happily no new taxes were introduced and both personal and corporate tax bands were reduced. The recent Investment Forum confirmed potential investments of US$200 Million to be realized over the next two years. Here’s to celebrating more good news in the months ahead.
BUSINESSFOCUS Business Focus magazine is published every two months by Advertising & Marketing Services Limited (AMS), Saint Lucia. Publisher / Managing Editor: Lokesh Singh email@example.com Graphic Designer: Cecil Sylvester Advertising Sales: Cennette Flavien - firstname.lastname@example.org Hudson Myers - email@example.com Webmaster: Advertising & Marketing Services Photography: Ashley Anzie | Cecil Sylvester | Caribbean Export ScotiaBank | SMA | St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce St. Lucia Tourist Board | Invest Saint Lucia | Sandals St. Lucia Manufacturers Association | GIS Contributors: Lokesh Singh | Ramia Thomas | Scotiabank Lyndell Halliday | Vangie Bhagoo- Ramrattan St Lucia Chamber of Commerce | St. Lucia Tourist Board Caribbean Business Report | DIGICEL | Dr Chris Bart Caribbean Export | ACCA | Invest Saint Lucia Trinidad Express | Trinidad Guardian | GIS Jamaica Observer | Antigua Observer | Keats Compton First Citizens Investment Services | Caribbean360 Nashroon Mohammed | Jun Zhang St. Lucia Manufacturers Association Editorial, Advertising, Design & Production: Advertising & Marketing Services P.O. Box 2003, Castries, Saint Lucia Tel: (758) 453-1149; Fax: (758) 453-1290 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.amsstlucia.com, www.stluciafocus.com Business Focus welcomes contributions from professionals or writers in specialized fields or areas of interest. Reproduction of any material contained herein without written approval, constitutes a violation of copyright. Business Focus reserves the right to determine the content of the publication. Issue No. 75
On The Cover: Scotiabank Management Celebrating 50 Years of Service
Years of Service & E xcellen c
lebrating 50 Years of Service www .stluc www.s
iafoc tluciafo us.co cus.co m m
BusinessFocus Mar Apr May / Jun
GET $50,000 GET $50,000 in just 3 days in just 3 days Apply for a Business Loan Today! 44 Micoud Street, Castries (758) 451 3085
Charlery Holdings BuildingCnr. Clarke Street & VieuxFort/Laborie HighwayVieux Fort Tel: (758) 454-9332
Apply for a Business Loan Today! 44Upstairs MicoudExcelsior Street, Plaza,Bridge Castries Street, (758) 451Soufriere 3085 Tel: (758) 459-7322
Charlery Holdings BuildingCnr. Clarke Street & VieuxFort/Laborie HighwayVieux Fort Tel: (758) 454-9332
Upstairs Excelsior Plaza,Bridge Street, Soufriere Tel: (758) 459-7322
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
BUSINESS BRIEFS Secretary General Hugh Riley said about the introduction of Tourism at CAPE. The introduction of the five new subjects follows the launch of Digital Media in September 2013. This now brings the total number of subjects offered at CAPE to 30.
JetBlue adds four new Caribbean Flights Five new CAPE subjects for 2015 Come September 2014, five newgeneration subjects for the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) will be taught for first examination in 2015. The subjects are: Agricultural Science, Entrepreneurship, Performing Arts, Physical Education and Sport, and Tourism. All five subjects are being launched by the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) during May, 2014. “The five subjects will be launched in five CXC participating countries with each event having a specific subject theme,” the Council said in a release. “The first launch took place on Friday, 9th May in Barbados, and the theme for the event in Barbados was Tourism.” Guyana hosted the launch with the Agricultural Science theme on Monday, May 12, with Trinidad and Tobago followed on May 15 with the Entrepreneurship theme. St Lucia hosted the launch which focused on the Performing Arts on Friday, May 16 with the final launch set for Jamaica on Tuesday, May 20, at The Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston. The final theme is Physical Education and Sport. CXC is partnering with the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO), the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the Cultural Development Foundation of St Lucia, the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI), and various tertiary institutions in Jamaica to host the events. “This step is a giant leap toward providing our youth with the knowledge, the confidence and insights needed to change the quality of the experience we sell. Thousands of tourism frontline workers who are in positions to make or break this industry will now have an opportunity to get a tertiary education. For them a CXC certificate, or just the knowledge gained while studying for that certificate, could be an absolute game-changer,” CTO BusinessFocus May / Jun
With the addition of its second route between T&T and the United States, JetBlue Airways in May launched four additional nonstop Caribbean routes. One of the new routes connects Newark Liberty International Airport with the Dominican city of Santiago. The other routes link the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport with Montego Bay, Jamaica; Port-of-Spain, Trinidad; and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. The airline said in a release that a lack of intra-regional flights in the Caribbean impedes the movement of passengers and cargo among the local economies, most of which suffer economic difficulties. In recent months, JetBlue has announced a substantial increase in its inter- and intraregional routes servicing the Caribbean, making Puerto Rico its regional hub and covering the gap left when American Eagle exited that market a year ago. “We now offer customers 69 nonstop routes from the US to the Caribbean and more than 200 daily flights to, from and within the Caribbean, which is more than any other airline,” JetBlue President Robin Hayes said. “We will continue to expand our presence in this region to better connect families and friends, create international business opportunities and bring Americans to the wonderful leisure destinations across the Caribbean,” he added.
JMMB acquires AIC Securities The JMMB Group has acquired full ownership of AIC Securities Ltd. In a recent statement, the Jamaica-based company announced that it had received regulatory approval to proceed with the transaction through its newly-opened local subsidiary, JMMB Investments (Trinidad & Tobago) Ltd.
The company said it will be using its acquisition of AIC Securities to further deepen its foray into T&T. “This supports an even more diversified bundle of financial solutions that serves to meet the financial goals and needs of its clients, at every stage of their life. With the conclusion of this acquisition, JMMB’s portfolio in Trinidad will become further boosted by the inclusion of mutual fund offerings. JMMB also owns Intercommercial Bank and Intercommercial Trust & Merchant Bank, both headquartered in Chaguanas, Trinidad,” the company said. Headquartered in Kingston, Jamaica, JMMB is a unique financial services group founded on the principles of love and having the best interest of all at heart. It has operations in Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and T&T. Its lines of business span securities dealing, stock brokering, foreign exchange trading, insurance brokering, banking and remittances. It is listed on the T&T, Barbados and Jamaica Stock Exchanges. AIC Securities Ltd, a former member of the AIC Financial Group, is headquartered and has two locations in Trinidad. It is a securities dealer that offers portfolio management and investment advisory services. As a stock broker, it is a member of the T&T Stock Exchange (TTSE).
SLTB Rep Among Travel Agent Magazine 2014 Top Supplier Sales Reps
Hotensia Joseph Captures First Place – International Tourist Board! A US based Regional Marketing Manager of the Saint Lucia Tourist Board has been named one of Travel Agent Magazine’s 2014 Top Supplier Sales Representatives. The prestigious and distinguished honor was bestowed on industry veteran Hortensia Joseph by the editors of the highly influential and reputable magazine.
BUSINESS BRIEFS Joseph, who oversees the mid-Atlantic region of the US market on behalf of the SLTB, is a beloved tourism industry insider with years of international sales experience. She was awarded the top position (First Place - International Tourist Board) based on what the magazine’s editors described as “her tireless work in helping to make the tough sales day in and day out.” Joseph says she is deeply honored and humbled by the win, which she shares with Eusi Skeete of the Barbados Tourism Authority. “This latest recognition will only strengthen my resolve to continue to put my best foot forward in selling what I think is the best destination in the world – ‘Simply Beautiful,’ Saint Lucia,” exclaimed Joseph.
Microsoft Buys Nokia
Microsoft Corp has announced it has completed its acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services business. The acquisition has been approved by Nokia shareholders and by governmental regulatory agencies around the world. The completion of the acquisition marks the first step in bringing these two organisations together as one team. “Today we welcome the Nokia Devices and Services business to our family. The mobile capabilities and assets they bring will advance our transformation,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “Together with our partners, we remain focused on delivering innovation more rapidly in our mobile-first, cloud-first world.” Reporting to Nadella is former Nokia President and CEO Stephen Elop, who will serve as Executive Vice President of the Microsoft Devices Group, overseeing an expanded devices business that includes Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Surface, Perceptive Pixel (PPI) products and accessories. Microsoft welcomes personnel with deep industry experience in more than 130 sites across 50 countries worldwide,
including several factories that design, develop, manufacture, market and sell a broad portfolio of innovative smart devices, mobile phones and services.
The Special Meeting of Shareholders was held at the National Cultural Centre in Castries and preceded the Annual Meeting of Shareholders.
LUCELEC Shareholders Approve Establishment of Subsidiary Company
Republic makes its Offer for Ghana Bank
St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) has been granted approval by its shareholders to establish a subsidiary company. The decision came at the end of a Special Meeting of Shareholders held on Friday, May 9, 2014. The subsidiary company will allow LUCELEC to explore new business opportunities separate from what it is currently engaged in which is the generation and sale of electricity. And while it will be wholly owned by LUCELEC, this new entity will be financially, legally and operationally separate from the regulated electricity company. This is to ensure good governance, business transparency and a clear separation of activities associated with electricity generation and sale from activities that the subsidiary company may be engaged in. The new subsidiary company is part of LUCELEC’s corporate diversification strategy aimed at increasing shareholder value. LUCELEC’s Managing Director Trevor Louisy says diversification has been a fundamental part of LUCELEC’s strategy for some time having evaluated the trends in the electricity business and the operating environment. “Over the years we have seen reductions in electricity demand driven by energy efficiency and conservation, as well as the introduction of grid-tied renewable energy systems. That trend is going to continue. There have also been moves to amend the Electricity Supply Act (ESA) and LUCELEC’s exclusive license. If we are to continue to generate value for our shareholders and ensure the viability of the company, we have to make adjustments and diversifying our revenue streams is one of those adjustments,” Louisy explained. Shareholders who attended the meeting granted “limited discretion” to use LUCELEC’s retained profits to invest in the subsidiary company.
Republic Bank has submitted its Offeror’s Statement to HFC Bank and the Ghana Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) detailing its offer to all shareholders of HFC Bank, the bank said in a release. The mandatory offer is in line with the requirements of the SEC Code on Takeovers and Mergers and follows the Bank of Ghana’s approval for Republic Bank to make a mandatory offer to shareholders. Republic Bank made the announcement on April 17, 2014. The share price offered by Republic has been increased from its initial indicative offer of GHS 1.30 (US$0.48) to GHS 1.60 (US$0.58) per share. The revised offer is at a premium of 65 per cent over the mandatory price and 28 per cent above the current trading price. As part of the statement, Republic Bank’s auditors, Ernst and Young, have provided confirmation that available resources of the Bank are sufficient to satisfy full acceptance of the offer, which shall be settled in cash or by way of bank transfer. The offer is subject at all times to the provisions of the Takeover Code and the Listing Rules of the Ghana Stock Exchange, the bank said. Republic Bank continues to follow the process as detailed by the SEC; which includes a requirement that HFC Bank advises receipt of the Offeror’s Statement to the SEC within 24 hours. “Republic Bank remains committed to adding value to the total operations of HFC Bank, through the provision of opportunities; the continued professional development of staff, and the growth and expansion of product and service offerings,” the bank said. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Board Composition: The Bricks & Mortar of Good Corporate Governance
By Dr. Chris Bart Good governance begins with good directors. Accordingly, it is essential that today’s boards be comprised of directors who know what they are doing. Boards need to have directors with the right competencies and mix of skills that will serve both the current and longer term best interests of their organizations. And as the range of boardroom responsibilities and oversight issues increases, having directors who are qualified to address them becomes even more challenging. Finding the right directors of course starts with knowing what to look for. The first question therefore that every board needs to consider when assessing its composition and future requirements is: How many directors do we need? As a BusinessFocus May / Jun
starting point, a board should be comprised of an “odd” number of members in order to deal with controversial decisions that may ultimately have to be made by a vote as opposed to consensus. And while board size can vary dramatically, it is worth pointing out that the average size of a publicly listed board has, for the past decade or more, tended to hover around eleven members. Having eleven directors recognizes that the board as a whole should not have to deal with the minutia of every oversight issue, but rather be able to delegate to selected board committees (made up exclusively of directors) the authority to carry out certain detailed oversight activities on their behalf. Those board committees typically include: Audit and Finance; Governance and Nominating; and Human Resources and Compensation. Having a large board therefore guarantees that there are sufficient numbers of directors to populate those committees without overburdening any one individual. Consequently, the more committees the board feels it should have, the more it may require additional directors to evenout the responsibilities. Conversely, the smaller the board, the greater becomes each individual director’s workload. After the issue of board size has been determined, the next most important question regarding board composition concerns the specific qualifications of the
directors. What types of persons should be asked to join and remain on a board? Given that one of the primary functions of directors is to provide oversight of the organization and its management, it is essential that there be a sufficient number of “outside directors” – representing at least 50% of the board to give them strength in numbers - who are also considered to be independent of management. After all, how can directors who are also part of management give proper oversight of themselves. The truth is, they can’t. The value of independent directors therefore is that they bring an objective and unfettered state of mind which allows them in their supervisory role to diligently probe and assess the quality of the recommendations that management brings to them. And it is with that capacity wherein lies an independent director’s greatest asset: the ability to say “NO” to a poorly thought out or ill advised idea. Being independent of management (or a controlling shareholder) and maintaining an objective state of mind, however, is a tricky matter about which good boards and good board chairs need to be ever vigilant. Perhaps, this is why there is more and more support being given to the notion of requiring the mandatory replacement of public company directors after 10 years of board service.
But just “being objective” should not be the only characteristic that good boards look for in their independent directors. There are also a number of other specific competencies and skills that are absolutely crucial to have present – and be displayed around the boardroom table. To start with, there should be one or more directors with the expertise and experience to give effective oversight to the organization’s major functional activities: finance and accounting, legal, human resources, marketing, etc. There should also be directors who have the specialized knowledge to help their management deal with the particular nature of the organization’s industry as well as with any emerging technologies, such as social media and cyber security, that may impact business success. But, by far, the biggest consideration that needs to be taken into account when deciding who should be on a board is a director’s ability to contribute to the future strategy of the organization. What this means in practical terms is that if your company is planning on making an acquisition (where the regularly reported failure rate is up to 80%), it should have at least a couple of directors who have successfully acquired and integrated several acquisitions on their own before joining the board. And if your organization intends on opening operations in China, Mexico, Canada or even another Caribbean Island, a number of your directors should be able to provide cautionary advice on how to do this and also, perhaps more importantly, what not to do. Indeed, more than one Canadian company has had to retreat from its foray into the United States because it did not have at least a few directors who could have pointed out the perils and pitfalls that needed to be overcome before doing so. After factoring “strategic expertise” into account, it is vitally important that there be diversity of thought when selecting and keeping directors. Nothing will kill a good idea (or keep a bad one) than a group of directors who all think the same way because they all share the same backgrounds and experiences which in today’s environments means boards which are either too male or too pale. In some research I did two years ago, I was actually able to explain how and why women bring better decision making capabilities onto a board. So check your gender ratio which in today’s world should be aggressively moving to the 30% female mark. With all the considerations and conditions listed above, how should a board go about determining if it is made up of directors with the necessary
qualifications? I have found that the best way for a board to assess its composition is through the use of a “board skill matrix”. (see inset) Developing one first involves having an open and forthright discussion among the directors to identify the skills, competencies and characteristics required by the board as a whole and then honestly assessing the degree to which individual directors satisfy each need. Again it is not necessary for each director to possess all of the requirements on the matrix but all of the requirements listed should be
your board have the skills, qualifications, competencies, experiences and characteristics required to give effective oversight of your organization and its management given its particular business and industry circumstances? And if you think that there is room for improvement in the way they carry out their governance oversight function, you might also want to consider sending them to one of the corporate governance training programs currently available in the region – like the one currently being offered by The
met collectively by the board. The value in the matrix then comes mostly from identifying the “skill gaps” from which the board members can then have another conversation about how they intend to fill them – either through board training, board additions or board replacements. Experience has also taught many boards, the hard way, that creating the skill matrix and having the subsequent discussions about any ‘”gaps” is best handled with the assistance of an outside facilitator. Doing so helps reduce the appearance of bias in the assessment process and mitigates the tendency among certain directors to overstate their qualifications. In conclusion, the way to build better boards is by having better directors. So here’s the big, uncomfortable question for Caribbean directors: to what extent does
Caribbean Governance Training Institute. After all, it’s not education which is expensive, but rather ignorance. About the Author: Dr. Chris Bart, FCPA is a recognized governance authority, the author of two best sellers, and Co-Founder of the Caribbean Governance Training Institute. The Institute is currently providing a six part corporate governance program offered one night per week over six weeks and a major governance conference is being planned for late June. For more information visit CGTI’s website: http://www. caribbeangovernancetraininginstitute. com/ or phone Lisa at 758 451 2500
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
BUSINESSTECH TECH BUSINESS
Digicel Closes Re-Financing Plan Raising Additional Capital to Invest in Myanmar (Burma)
Denis O'brien Digicel Chairman The telecom provider, Digicel Group expects to raise over US$546 million ($60 b) in a bond offer to refinance existing debt. This is the latest financing drive for the Irish owned telecom currently preparing to invest in Myanmar (Burma). "Digicel Group received and accepted for purchase $546.49 million aggregate principal amount, or 70.52 per cent of its outstanding 10.5 per cent senior notes due 2018," stated the company in an April dated release. Digicel intended to raise up to US$865 million ($94.3 b) in a private placement for financing and working capital purposes, according to March issued company releases. "The consents are sufficient to effect all of the proposed amendments to the indenture governing the notes as set forth in Digicel's offer to purchase and consent solicitation statement dated March 19, 2014," stated Digicel in its release. "The proposed amendments eliminate substantially all of the restrictive covenants and certain default provisions." Citigroup Global Markets will serve as the dealer manager and solicitation agent for the tender offer and consent solicitation. The group recently indicated that it would intend to use the net proceeds from this offering to "repurchase any and all of Digicel's 10.5 per cent senior notes due 2018". Any remaining net proceeds would be used for general corporate purposes possibly including capital expenditures, investments, acquisitions or debt repayment. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Digicel which operates in 30 markets throughout the Caribbean, El Salvador and the South Pacific avoided raising funds in the US which would apparently require the disclosure of financials for the private company incorporated in Bermuda and owned by Irish Investor Denis O'Brien. The Digicel group in December issued US$500 million of the existing 8.25 per cent DGL senior notes due 2020, which brought the total amount outstanding of the DGL 2020 notes to US$2 billion, financials stated. Digicel last year entered into an agreement to construct and lease up to 1,250 wireless towers in Myanmar with Ooredoo QSC as the anchor tenant. Ooredoo, a Qatar-based telecommunications carrier, was awarded one of two licences in July 2013 to provide mobile communications services in Myanmar. The Digicel group earned US$36.9 million ($3.9 billion) net profit over three months ending December 2013 which reversed the loss in the prior year's quarter, financials indicated. Over
nine-months net profit totaled US$61 million which reversed a whooping US$215 million loss in the comparative period the year before. Haiti remained the top territory, followed by Papua New Guinea which surpassed Jamaica over the quarter, financials indicate. The group earned US$305 million before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) for the quarter, which represents an EBITDA margin of 46 per cent of service revenues, an increase of one percentage point from the prior year period. Subscribers increased by five per cent from 12.8 million subscribers at December 31, 2012 to 13.4 million subscribers at December 31, 2013, financials indicated. Digicel Group's cash on hand at December 2013 amounted to US$1.5 billion.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Owners of Eye US$100m Dividend
Raises US$1.25B in a Bond Issue to Re-Finance
Shareholders of Flow's parent, Columbus International, which include Canadian-Jamaican Michael Lee Chin, stands to receive dividend payments of up to US$100 million ($11 billion) following a successful bond issue. The telecommunications group raised US$1.25 billion through an offer that closed recently, in order to finance the early retirement of costly debt. Indeed, the 7.375 per cent coupon rate on the new note that will expire in 2021 is considerably lower than the 11.5 per cent that is tacked on to the US$640-million bond that was issued in 2009 and the 9.5 per cent rate on another US$212 million in debt. The refinancing should save the company some US$30 million annually in interest payments. "The balance of the net proceeds may be applied to pay up to US$100 million in dividends and for general corporate purposes, including the funding of an acquisition previously announced," said Columbus in a statement. The bond was oversubscribed by six times. "The successful closing of this significant financing is a true milestone in Columbus' history," said Brendan Paddick, Columbus Founder and CEO. "The markets have spoken and have validated both Columbus' vision and its business plan. The six times oversubscribed deal built an order book of close to US$8 billion, with demand from more than 300 investors around the world." He added: "Columbus has attracted a stable of world-class financial sponsors as we continue to aggressively expand and invest in the Caribbean and Latin American marketplace. Columbus is truly poised for future growth and continued network investment, now with a proven track record of repeated efficient access to the capital markets." The bonds are not registered under the US Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and were offered and sold by Columbus outside the US under Regulation S, and in the US in a transaction exempt from registration under the US Securities Act. The telecommunications company, which is based in Barbados, provides digital cable television, broadband Internet and digital landline telephony in Trinidad, Jamaica, Barbados, Grenada, BusinessFocus May / Jun
Brendan Paddick Chairman & CEO
Michael Lee-Chin Director
St Lucia and Curacao under the brand name Flow and in St Vincent & the Grenadines and Antigua under the brand name Karib Cable. Columbus also provides next generation connectivity and IT solutions, managed networking and cloud-based services under the brand Columbus Business Solutions. Through its fully protected, ringed submarine fiber-optic network spanning more than 42,300 kilometres (km) and its 34,300 km terrestrial fiber and coaxial network, Columbus' 2,700 plus professionals provide advanced telecom services to a diverse residential and corporate client base of well over 650,000 customers.
Opts for LTE Mobile Technology LIME Granted a New 15 Year Telecoms Licence by Jamaica Government.
LIME Headquarters in Jamaica
LIME invested US$30 million or J$3.25 billion to secure a new operating licence in Jamaica and additional high-speed mobile data spectrum. This will allow LIME to transition to a Long Term Evolution (LTE) network through the deployment of AWS spectrum. LIME is investing up to US$79 million or J$8.7 billion to upgrade and expand its existing 4G service. It is switching its cell sites over to 4G technology to deliver mobile speeds of up to 21 Mbps. Speaking from LIME's Kingston headquarters, a LIME spokesperson said: "As stated by Minister Paulwell, use of the 700 Megahertz spectrum was negotiated by Digicel for the agreed price of US$25
million. LIME elected to bid for a block of alternative LTE spectrum using Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum. "The frequency range of AWS is 1,700 - 2,100 Megahertz. At that band level, transmission of the LTE signal is more challenging than at the lower 700 megahertz band which has better inbuilt penetration. 700MHz has a lower band, this allows a carrier to cover more area with less cell sites (faster to market). Nonetheless, several carriers in the United States are using AWS. In fact, three of the top five mobile providers in the US (ATT, T-Mobile & Verizon Wireless) supplement their transmission of LTE services via AWS spectrum.
"Therefore, AWS sits virtually shoulderto-shoulder with 700 MHZ LTE spectrum, although the latter is better known and associated with LTE technology by members of the public including the media. "Our mission will have to be to create deeper understanding within the public domain that AWS is just as good for transmitting LTE signals. Expectedly, Digicel will push hard to delineate the technologies and to say that they have the superior version. This makes it even more important for us to generate the understanding from very early so that confusion does not prevail."
We Provide the following services in addition to the refueling of vehicles: Soufriere 758-459-7729
Cooking gas â€“ both Sol and TexGas * Telephone top up â€“ Lime/Digicel Vehicle accessories, car batteries, air fresheners * Lottery Tickets Oils and lubricants * Ice * Convenient store
Location: Fond Cacao, Soufriere Telephone : 459 -7831/459-7729 BusinessFocus May / Jun |
WhatsApp Driving Mobile Data Boom
Digicel Jamaica CEO Barry O'Brien DIGICEL says it has nearly a million mobile phone users actively using data on devices in Jamaica, against the background of a "massive explosion" in demand for WhatsApp and other mobile data platforms. According to Digicel Jamaica CEO Barry O'Brien, there was a more than 150 per cent spike in the use of data among subscribers on the company's 4G network last financial year. And positioning the company towards facilitating the increasing demand for mobile data will be one of two major strategic areas of focus â€” the other being ICT â€” going forward as core voice revenues continue to be pressured by voice over IP applications and downward pricing, O'Brien said. The Digicel boss noted that the move towards mobile data is a global trend. He supported his assessment by highlighting that mobile messaging platform WhatsApp has grown to almost 500 million customers across the world sending 64 billion messages each day. WhatsApp allows users to chat with their phone contacts, both one-on-one and in groups. The service allows people to send texts, photos, videos and voice recordings over the Internet. Users can also communicate with people overseas without incurring expensive international texts or phone call charges. Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, which is buying WhatsApp for US$19 billion, expects the platform to grow to a billion users within two years. "What this means from a mobile telecommunications standpoint is that more traditional forms of communications such as text messaging are being replaced by the likes of WhatsApp, enabled by mobile data connections," O'Brien said BusinessFocus May / Jun
in an address at the Jamaica Employers' Federation CEO Breakfast, at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston recently. "We are also predicting that many other mobile applications will play a vital role in the development of Jamaica and the region, especially apps dealing with VoIP services, mobile financial services, media/ content access and payment systems," he added. Following on a $7-billion investment in its network between 2011 and 2012, Digicel spent an additional $4 billion last year and has committed to investing a further $4 billion in its 4G mobile broadband technology in 2014, primarily to increase penetration and capacity. With the increased demand for mobile data, there has of course been an increase in demand for data-enabled handsets. In fact, Digicel reported earlier this year that it saw a 50 per cent increase in dataenabled handsets in 2013 compared to 2012. In order to attract data customers, the company last year invested in the development of its own data-enabled smartphone, which is relatively very affordable compared to other smartphones on the market. "Since launch, we have sold over 60,000 such devices," O'Brien said. Digicel also has plans to aggressively diversify revenues through ICT, which presently accounts for about a tenth of sales. The company has invested heavily in ICT, including corporate and consumer WiMax networks for delivering wireless broadband, a Tier 3 data hosting centre and the current subterranean fibre rollout. "From these investments we have been rewarded with a greater than 50 per cent
increase in ICT revenues in our financial year just ended," O'Brien said, adding "We see this continuing to increase with the target to get ICT to 25 per cent of total revenues over the next two years." He noted that the growth in ICT bodes well for the development of the country, citing studies that show that every 10 per cent growth in ICT equals one per cent growth in an overall economy. O'Brien also used the platform to reaffirm Digicel's committment to Jamaica, which is no longer the top revenue-earner for the company. Currency movements and lower call rates resulted in Jamaica dropping one spot to the third highest revenue earning territory for the telecoms group, during its December 2013 quarter. Haiti remained the top territory, followed by Papua New Guinea, which surpassed Jamaica over the quarter, financials indicated. The revenue decline in Jamaica came against the background of the group relocating key management from the island to Ireland at a new corporate office in Dublin, a move that raised questions as to whether Digicel's corporate base in fact remains in Jamaica, where the group has called home since its start-up in 2001. The group in 2012 opened an 11-storey office in downtown Kingston, Jamaica describing it as its global headquarters. "Despite the main issue of currency depreciation, Digicel continues to believe in Jamaica," O'Brien said. "We plan to remain truly relevant as we play our part in the development of business in Jamaica." Digicel Jamaica recently renewed its 15-year mobile license and purchased a Long-Term Evolution (LTE) licence for a combined total of US$85 million.
T&T Closer to Internet Exchange Point The Board of the T&T Internet Exchange (TTIX) has entered into a hosting agreement with Fujitsu Caribbean (Trinidad) Limited, moving one step closer to development of an Internet Exchange Point (IXP) for T&T. Fujitsu will be providing rack space and the IXP switch at its data center in Barataria, Trinidad free of charge for four years, making a significant contribution to the development of critical ICT infrastructure for this country. Kurleigh Prescod, Chairman of TTIX, said: “We are overwhelmingly pleased with this contribution by Fujitsu to aid in the development of Trinidad and Tobago’s first Internet Exchange Point, and we look forward to partnering with Fujitsu over the next four years and beyond to make the IXP a success.” Jean-Paul Dookie, Executive Vice President of Government Business for Fujitsu, Trinidad said of the agreement: “Fujitsu’s collaboration with the TTIX to establish the Trinidad and Tobago IXP is a demonstration of our commitment and brand promise, ‘shaping tomorrow with you’. We view the TTIX as an essential building block towards the development of the Trinidad and Tobago knowledge economy, through the efficiency enabled for local content creation and collaboration, through this peering point. By hosting the technology in our robust Tier III Uptime Certified Data Centre in Barataria, we are delighted to support these efforts and serve as the home for the IXP.” The IXP is a critical component of broadband infrastructure necessary for development of a knowledge-based society driven by adoption of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and encouragement of locally-hosted
Internet applications. It will increase the robustness and privacy of local communications between end users, reduce the reliance on international network facilities for exchanging native Internet traffic, and deliver improvements in the quality of Internet access to consumers in T&T for services and local content. The T&T Internet Exchange (TTIX) is a non-profit company comprising the seven major Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the country and has been established to set up an Internet Exchange Point (IXP) which will facilitate the exchange of local Internet traffic between the ISPs. There are currently seven IXPs in the Caribbean in Curacao (AMS-IX), St Maarten (OCIX), Grenada (GREX), British Virgin Islands (BVIX), Haiti, St Lucia (SLIX) and Dominica (DANIX). TTIX is working towards establishing the IXP in T&T in the first half of this year.
Acquires Turks and Caicos Television Station REGIONAL wireless telecoms provider Digicel, together with its local partner Telemedia, has announced the acquisition of WIV Cable TV, which has been operating in the Turks and Caicos Islands for over 30 years, and its sister company TCT, which operates the TCExpress high speed cable internet service. The transaction closed on April 1, 2014, for an undisclosed sum. With Digicel already having launched 4G services in the Turks and Caicos within the last 12 months, this move sees Digicel not only enhancing its ability to provide broadband Internet services to consumers and business, but also moving into the cable television space for the first time in the Turks and Caicos. Commenting on the acquisitions, E Jay Saunders, General Manager, Digicel Turks
and Caicos, said, "We are very excited by this acquisition. At Digicel, we understand the vital role that a robust communications infrastructure plays in driving economic growth in a country and this acquisition shows our commitment to achieving that end." He continued, "Through this purchase, we now have the most extensive fiberoptic network in the country, which we will utilise to ensure that our customers continue to benefit from our commitment to delivering best value, best service, and the best network. We would like to thank the management and staff of WIV and TCT for the tremendous job that they have done over the years and we would like to officially welcome them into the Digicel family."
E Jay Saunders BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Business a ‘Strategic Partner’ Digicel Business has been named a Microsoft Strategic Services Provider. It means Digicel Business has the platform capability to sell and deliver the full suite of Microsoft-hosted solutions on a regional level in the Caribbean and Central America. Specifically, through its data centre in Jamaica and three dedicated sub-platforms in Bermuda, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago, Digicel Business has deployed Desktop as a service across all 26 of its markets in the region. The partnership follows last year’s launch of Digicel’s new cloud platform. Featuring the latest suite of cloud solutions, and working with the leading global cloud technology providers, Digicel Business now offers the region’s most advanced integrated cloud solutions portfolio. Located at Digicel’s Tier III accredited data centre in Jamaica, Digicel said its cloud platform is the most secure data hosting platform in the Caribbean and Central America, meaning all data is securely BusinessFocus May / Jun
managed and resides in the Caribbean jurisdiction – making it the largest inmarket private cloud in the region. With Digicel’s cloud, SMEs, government departments and large companies alike can operate their IT environments for a fraction of the cost of building their own infrastructure. By leveraging Digicel’s Cloud platform to provide core applications, data backup and business email, businesses can greatly reduce spending on technology infrastructure and IT resources, while at the same time improving their security and flexibility, the company noted. Using solutions delivered with Digicel’s Cloud platform, customers are experiencing an average saving of 25 per cent on their current IT costs, and the move to a monthly payment model ensures there is no need to invest vital working capital on internal IT. These savings can now be directed to enhancing new products or services that can drive revenue growth or simply improve user access and satisfaction, it
added. Moreover, Cloud Services deliver real productivity and flexibility gains, giving customers access to their applications and data from any location securely – at any time and from any device. Digicel Business Solutions chief executive officer, Tom Carson, said: “With current trends predicting that 60 per cent of server workloads will be virtualised by the end of 2014, Digicel’s cloud platform is now delivering these benefits to Governments and businesses of all sizes across the Caribbean and Central America.” Digicel recently had a roundtable on its cloud services. Held at its Warrens, St Michael offices, presentations were made by Digicel Business’ chief operating officer, Martin Carroll, head of managed services, Joe McCusker, and business development director, Austin Madden. Digicel Barbados chief executive officer Mark Linehan, and business solutions director Martin Keogh also spoke.
After Tax Profit Plummets 87% Caribbean Insurance and real estate giant the Guardian Group (Guardian Holdings Ltd) has seen its net profit after tax in 2013 plummet 87 per cent from 2012. While the Port of Spain-based group of companies noted that its net after tax profit to shareholders at the end of 2013 stood at $46 million, this was a “decline of 87 per cent when compared to $353 million in 2012”. In published financial statements to December 31, 2013, Group Chairman Arthur Lok Jack said this “significant decline” was mainly due to a further and substantial write-down of $457 million of Guardian Group’s Pointe Simon asset in Martinique coupled with a realised loss of $30 million due to Jamaica’s national debt exchange as well as fair value losses of $27 million. The Pointe Simon project consists of an office tower building (for which leases are now being negotiated), condominiums and a hotel which will be completed later this year.
Arthur Lok Jack – Chairman, Guardian Group An agreement for sale has been entered into for the hotel with a French hotel operator and the write-down, commercialisation of the office tower and condominiums will make Pointe Simon a viable project that will begin to contribute cash profits to the Guardian Group, Lok Jack said. He noted that the group’s insurance companies are all strongly capitalised and hold dominant positions and are expected to continue to sustained growth. The Guardian Group is an active operator in the insurance industry in St Lucia.
Multi-Donor Trust Fund Established to Help Caribbean Manage Debt The World Bank says a successful multi-donor trust fund has launched a new phase with commitments from donors for close to US$20 million to help the Caribbean and other poor countries manage debt. The World Bank said the Debt Management Facility II (DMF II) programme builds on previous success in debt-management advisory work and marks the beginning of a new partnership between the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. The partnership will be dedicated to strengthening the capacity of the Caribbean and other developing countries to manage their debt in a manner that is sustainable and encourages economic development, the World Bank said. It said the facility expects to raise US$40 million, adding that the “new pot of money” will extend the work of the first DMF, a US$22 million trust fund that the World Bank launched in November 2008. The initiative was born out of a recognition that low-income countries graduating from debt-relief programmes, such as the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries, might continue to struggle. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Bahamas Liberalises Telecoms Sector From April 1 Prime Minister Perry Christie is welcoming the liberalisation of the telecommunications sector here saying “Bahamians would for the first time have competition and competition breeds greater levels of efficiency.” The liberalisation of the sector was one of the campaign promises of then opposition People’s Labour Party (PLP) in 2012, with Christie promising voters that his administration would engage the British telecommunication giant, Cable & Wireless, the lone telecommunication provider here on the need to liberalise the sector. In 2011, amidst public outcry, the Hubert Ingraham government sold controlling shares of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) to the London-based telecommunication company, for US$210 million. Christie had promised voters that a PLP government would seek to regain the majority shares and that the party “believes in a share owning democracy” BusinessFocus May / Jun
and would sell BTC shares in tranches to Bahamians. Prime Minister Christie said that while the process had taken two years to be fulfilled he remains optimistic that the move is the right one given “some real tragic occurrences recently with the breakdown of the system and dropped calls. “So we expect to have major and significant improvement once competition ensues,” he said, adding that the acquisition of majority shares was not all that difficult. “What in fact we had to do was, by policy, we had negotiations with Cable & Wireless to reclaim two per cent (of shares) so that effectively the majority of the shares would rest with the Bahamian people. We are in the process of finalising that and the effective date for liberalisation where the government would be authorised to pursue liberalisation is April 1st; that’s where we are now.” Prime Minister Christie said relinquishing the two per cent shares by Cable and
Wireless has been agreed upon in principle and currently the two parties are “trying to work through the conditions that are associated with it into a final agreement that should be signed sometime within the next week or two.” Earlier this year, Prime Minister Christie described as “historic” the agreement under which the majority economic interest in the BTC has been returned to the state. Christie said the agreement with the British telecommunications giant, Cable and Wireless (CWC) would not cost the country “one single cent.” “In particular, there will be no extension of BTC’s monopoly and no postponement of the liberalisation of the telecommunications sector,” Christie said, reiterating “we have not paid, and will not have to pay, for the re-acquired shares in any form or fashion. So, in financial terms, this is a win-win for the government and people of the Bahamas.”
Columbus and CWC Partner to Build Cable Station in Panama Through a Joint Venture, the Principals of Flow and LIME Will Provide Services to Atlanta-based Ocean Networks
TELECOMMUNICATIONS firm, Columbus International, which operates in the Caribbean as Flow, has inked a deal with US-based Ocean Networks to build a submarine cable station in Panama. Columbus Networks, working through the recently formed alliance company with Cable and Wireless, CNL-CWC Networks, will design and construct a carrier class cable station to house the South America Pacific Link (SAPL) submarine cable system and provide network operations and management (NOC and NMA) services. Ocean Networks, which is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, and which develops submarine cable systems for governments, carriers, content providers and research
and education groups, plans to run a 9,700-kilometre-long trans-Pacific cable that will connect Balboa, Panama to Oahu, Hawaii. Columbus and Ocean Networks have agreed to include additional commercial agreements for onward connectivity from this link to the NAP of Americas and the Caribbean region, using a variety of the diverse subsea network routes. The parents of LIME and Flow partnered to build out their underwater fibre-optic network and international wholesale capacity business. The joint venture between Cable and Wireless Communications and Columbus Networks resulted in the combination of 42,000 kilometres of cable connecting 42 countries in the Caribbean, the US and Central America. Columbus has a 72.5 per cent stake in, and management control of, the joint venture, called CNL-CWC Networks, with
CWC controlling the remaining 27.5 per cent share "with appropriate minority protections", apparently reflecting the asset value of the respective companies. CNL-CWC Networks started out operations on an agency basis by providing joint sales and marketing services for each of CWC's and Columbus' international wholesale capacity services. The alliance is to be broadened over the next year with Columbus and CWC contributing their sub-sea and related assets into the joint venture company, subject to obtaining regulatory approvals and certain other conditions being met. Once the applicable approval requirements and conditions have been met, the joint venture will then assume ownership and management control of the international wholesale capacity operations of CWC and Columbus, and all new investments in infrastructure will be made, and owned by it.
Avoid the mess
MIX & MATCH
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
THE ULTIMATE BALANCING ACT
In order to protect your portfolio it is necessary for you to “balance” your holdings between cash or money market accounts, equities (stocks),fixed income securities and real estate. Once you do that successfully, you will be protected against adverse trends in either interest rates, inflation, or a downturn in a particular industry or market segment. Basically it’s like your mother told you all those years ago, don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. Remember folks, the key to financial security is to generate sufficient cash flow from your investments to meet your expenses, the idea of free net cash flow. Let’s take a look at each of the categories listed above.
Cash and Short Term Cash Holdings From time to time, we may need cash for emergencies, family illness, a good investment opportunity or some unexpected expense. You should therefore keep part of your portfolio accessible in cash or such that you can borrow against it to meet a short term need. These holdings can take the form of money market accounts or savings accounts at banks, credit unions or other financial institutions. You should review these products and choose the one that is right for you. Do remember to ask whether there is any penalty or reduction in interest should you make a withdrawal from these accounts. Each of these will also have different interest rates so you should definitely shop around for the best rate.
Equities This class of investment provides the combination of income flow through BusinessFocus May / Jun
dividends plus capital appreciation (growth), or depreciation, should the share price rise or fall respectively. It is therefore recommended that your portfolio include some equities to help you achieve your goal of net positive cash flow. You should be aware of a couple of things with equities. Firstly, the price of a share can either go up or down. The price is reflective of a combination of company performance, demand and supply, the general level of business activity or an industry specific problem. Remember Enron, so there is some risk involved in this class of investment. Secondly, there is no guarantee that a company will pay a dividend, and as an ordinary stockholder you are not entitled or assured of receiving one; it is entirely dependant on the company’s performance and its stated policies. However, there are many companies on the local stock exchange that do pay regular dividends, so don’t get too worried. Finally, there are transaction costs involved in the purchase of equities, so ensure that you ask so you will be aware up front of the true cost of investing. Remember knowledge is power.
Fixed Income Securities One of the major shortcomings of the preceding options is that your earnings are uncertain or may fluctuate from time to time. In order to protect against this and the possible negative impact on your cash flow, you should also include some fixed income instruments in your portfolio. That way you will know up front how much you will earn from this class of investments. It will also provide a base income level for you in terms of cash flow. Examples of fixed income securities include First Citizens' Fixed Income
Paper, Treasury Bills, Government Bonds, Certificates of Deposits, commercial paper, debentures and Fixed Rate Mortgages. Each of these comes with differing risk profiles, so do be sure to investigate them thoroughly to ensure that you are comfortable with your final choice.
Real Estate This is probably the most expensive of all investments and will require planning and consistent savings to obtain. However, it is easily the one with the potentially largest payback. Real estate, like equities, provides the double attraction of providing current cash flow in the form of rent, and the longer-term return of increase in value. Also, you can increase your rental income to match inflation, something that you might not be able to do with your other classes of investments. You should be aware that the value of property is a combination of its location, accessibility and of course condition. There will be maintenance costs, taxes and acquisition costs attached to property. All in all though, this is still the mother load of investing. Keep scanning the classifieds and visit any property you are considering buying and do get it inspected and valued by qualified professionals before making a commitment to purchase. The term “caveat emptor” — let the buyer beware — may have been created specifically for property transactions. There are many pitfalls in this area, so professional and legal advice is strongly recommended. There are many other types of investments available to you from mutual funds to jewellery or antique cars. Each has unique characteristics, risk and potential return. So do explore the wide range of opportunities available to you but most of all have fun and remember to do your homework.
U.S. Gives Foreign Banks More Time on Anti-Tax Dodge Law The U.S. Treasury Department gave foreign financial institutions 10 extra days to register with the U.S. government, under a new law to combat offshore tax dodging by Americans that goes into effect on July 1, 2014. Under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), foreign banks, insurers and investment funds must send the Internal Revenue Service information about Americansâ€™ and U.S. permanent residentsâ€™ offshore accounts worth more than $50,000. Institutions that fail to comply could effectively be frozen out of U.S. markets. In addition to extending registration to May 5 from April 25, the Treasury Department said more countries are now FATCA compliant, alleviating worries for financial firms in Brazil, South Korea and South Africa, among other countries.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Auditors Can Stop
Public audit has a crucial role to play in both preventing ongoing waste of taxpayer money and boosting society’s trust and confidence about how governments spend public money, say the world’s audit chiefs in a new Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) report—Breaking Out: Public Audit’s New Role in a Post-Crash World. The report gathers views from public auditor generals, academics and policy advisers from Bhutan to Scotland. They offer reflections about the role of public audit in delivering accountability and improving public services, especially at a time when the private sector is increasingly involved in providing public services. While emphases differ in the countries represented in the report, there is a shared view that public audit is a vital check on public spending. This is reflected in the report’s foreword by Margaret Hodge, Member of Parliament and Chair of the influential UK Public Accounts Committee, who urges that public audit, and the work of the UK’s Public Accounts Committee, needs to provide effective oversight of the way government spends taxpayers’ money. In a statement, Hodge says: “Audit has to move forward, to test its efficiency and effectiveness in how money is raised, as well as how is it spent. Implementation of major projects, particularly in IT and Defence, is typically disastrous. Both result in the waste of millions, if not billions, of pounds of taxpayers’ money. Yet the Public Accounts Committee encounters the same failures time and time again. BusinessFocus May / Jun
“The role of the civil service has transformed over the last few decades, towards a much greater focus on delivery and away from policy advice and administration. In part, this is a result of the decision by recent governments to contract out more and more of our public services to the private sector.” Gillian Fawcett, Head of Public Sector at ACCA, says in the statement: “As the boundaries of public audit widens, the role of the public sector will need to expand to play a more crucial role in correcting the way public money is spent and accounted for. “Auditors must intervene earlier in the processes by which money is allocated to departments. A strong argument has been made that it is only by doing this that problems can be nipped in the bud. Providing assurance in the early stage of a project can limit the administrative failures, preventing them from spiralling into significant value for money failures.” The collection of essays offer an upbeat reflection of auditor’s role in accountability and improving public service from Australia to Jamaica, Scotland and Bhutan. The writers also speak about improving public engagement and strengthening scrutiny and public service effectiveness. Fawcett says: “They say there is a need for public audit to improve public engagement, strengthen scrutiny and public service effectiveness. Auditors must penetrate beyond. “If we want to better manage service failure risks and boost public trust then accountability and transparency need strengthening.”
Youth Get Wealth of Financial Knowledge at First Citizens Investment Seminar! It was standing room only at the second annual First Citizens Youth Investment Seminar at Bay Gardens Hotel on Tuesday April 22nd. Before the event, scores of excited young persons between the ages of 18 and 35 registered for the opportunity to learn "the five best financial moves to make in your 20s & 30s" from the equally youthful and energetic First Citizens Investment Services team. For the first time the event was included as part of the official activities for Youth Month which is celebrated in April and received the endorsement of the Ministry for Youth Development. Partners for the event included The Cell, Felly Belly, Choice TV and YO! magazine. The evening session began with complimentary Felly Belly smoothies and a spin the wheel game with prizes from First Citizens. During the welcome remarks, First Citizens Regional Manager Carole Eleuthere-Jn Marie noted that the high level of interest in the seminar was evidence that young people are concerned about how to effectively manage their finances. Youth Development Programme Officer Jim Xavier also spoke about the importance of the message and hoped that First Citizens would continue to host the event in Youth Month annually.
Participants then got the opportunity to hear the inspiring story of young entrepreneur Junior Ricardo Joseph, who is the managing director of Beyond Limits Construction Ltd. Joseph spoke of how his entrepreneurial spirit led him to succeed despite being from humble beginnings and how he has had to adjust his life and make choices that have resulted in the successful and growing business he now operates. The First Citizens team, Shaka St Ange, Christine Charlemagne, Denise Lewis, Nicole Mc Donald and Chad Auguste, then delivered advice on five financial moves for young people. The first focused on Equity investing and ways to take advantage of investment opportunities on the stock market. Effective budgeting was the second tip discussed and the third piece of useful financial advice the group received was about managing debt. Then it was on to preparing for the future with advice on how to work towards acquiring your first home and investing in your retirement. Participants also received advice from Felly Belly Manager Aida Azaire about opening and marketing a successful business in today's current economic climate. The Ministry of Human Resource Development's Priscilla Jeremie gave an informative presentation on education opportunities presented by the department.
The engaging and informative session ended a Q&A segment followed by a grand prize draw of an HTC status handset courtesy of The Cell which was won by the lucky Kimar Louisy.
Speaking about the Youth Seminar, First Citizens Admin & Marketing Officer, Nicole Mc Donald noted that the interest of young people had been peaked from the start. "Young people definitely want the information in order to put it into practice in their daily lives," she said, "and judging from the positive feedback we received today we will continue to use this as a vehicle to give solid financial advice. We also plan to take this seminar to the south of the island in order to give young persons in that area the opportunity to hear this significant financial message." First Citizens is also the host of the annual Budget Review Seminar and the Women and Investing Seminar. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
NCB Accesses US$16 Million in Trade Financing from IFC IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced that National Commercial Bank Jamaica Limited has joined its Global Trade Finance Program to expand its Trade Finance business in the Caribbean and better serve small and medium enterprises. "NCB executed its first transaction under the Global Trade Finance Programme in February 2014, accessing US$16 million in trade funding for its customers," said Septimus Blake, NCB Senior General Manager. "This facility will provide access to a global network of confirming banks, facilitate transactions where trade lines are limited, and also provide access to advisory services and training." NCB supports the trade finance needs of companies in Jamaica for a wide range of exports, including bauxite, alumina, and coffee, as well as imports such as cars, machinery, and construction equipment. By joining IFC's trade programme as an issuing bank, NCB will be able to offer more trade finance solutions to small and medium enterprises.
NCB Director Michael Lee Chin "IFC welcomes NCB to its Global Trade Finance Program," said Rajeev Gopal, IFC Resident Representative for Jamaica and Belize. "This shows IFC's efforts to provide integrated solutions for financing importers and exporters, and our institution's commitment to strengthen and foster the development of Jamaica's financial market." IFC's Global Trade Finance Programme supports trade in emerging markets by providing partial or full guarantees for individual trade transactions through an effective mitigation instrument, the IFC's triple-A credit rating. The programme opens doors for local banks that face limits due to their size, their network of correspondent banks, or the political risk in their countries. IFC's Global Trade Finance Program has issued more than US$7.5 billion dollars in guarantees to facilitate trade flows in Latin America and the Caribbean since the programme began in the region in 2006. IFC's network includes 65 issuing banks in 21 Latin American and the Caribbean countries. Nearly 70 percent of the guarantees issued benefited local small and midsize businesses and supported inter-regional trade flows among emerging-market nations. The program has issued more than $26 billion in guarantees worldwide. SMEs and Corporate customers operating in the import or export businesses can access Trade services from NCB. Currently the sectors supported are Agriculture, Oil and Gas, Manufacturing, Energy, Distributive, Mining & Processing, Communication and Construction. To access Trade Finance services customers are invited to visit the nearest NCB Branch.
BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May//Jun Jun | | 24 24
One Caribbean Media Group Profits Increase by 15%
Sir Fred Gollop – Chairman, OCM Group
THE One Caribbean Media Group (OCM) achieved commendable financial results in 2013 despite challenges in some of its markets, Chairman Sir Fred Gollop has said. In a statement on OCM's audited results for the financial year ended December 31, 2013, Sir Fred noted that Group revenues increased by 12 per cent from TT$495 million (US$76.7 million) in 2012 to TT$552 million (US$85.5 million) in 2013. Profit before tax of $115 million (US$17.84 million) was 15 per cent above the $100.4 million (US$15.58 million) achieved in 2012. "The Group continues to focus on operational efficiencies and was able to sustain projected margins," Sir Fred said. "In addition, new investments made in 2012 and 2013 contributed to this favourable performance." The OCM Board of Directors has approved a final dividend of 47 cents per share which will bring the total dividend declared for 2013 to 74 cents compared to 70 cents in 2012. Payment will be made on April 30, 2014. OCM was born in January 2006 from the merger of two of the region's most distinguished and long-standing media enterprises, the Caribbean Communications Network (CCN) Group in Port of Spain and the Nation Corporation Group in Barbados. CCN comprises the Trinidad Express Newspapers, TV6, and the Grenada Broadcasting Network Ltd while the Nation Corporation includes the Nation Newspaper and Starcom Radio. In addition the group operates the Wave Radio Station in St Lucia and acquired the Gem Radio Network. The group recently acquired a licence to operate a new Radio Station in Antigua.
Diversity is its Strength - Sabga 2013 a Record Year – Profits More than $1Bn and 21% Over Previous Year The ANSA McAL Groups’s record profits of more than $1 billion for the 2013 Financial Year shows its diverse sectors are in a strong position, said Gerry Brooks, Chief Operating Officer of the ANSA McAL Group. “We are in a strong cash position, good capacity. Many of our investments leave us in a good position strategically and competitively to be able to replicate earnings on a day by day, month by month, quarter by quarter basis. We think our businesses are well positioned in each sector for 2014 and the future,” he said. Brooks spoke recently at the presentation of the 2013 year end audited financial results at Tatil Building, Maraval Road, St Clair, Trinidad. Norman Sabga, Chairman of the ANSA McAL Group, gave indicators of the Group’s performance. “Our revenues are up six per cent, and for the first time in the history of the group, we have made over $1 billion in profit and this is a landmark. Our profit before tax increased by 21 per cent to $1.14 billion and revenues improved to $6.2 billion,” he said. According to the Chairman's statement, earnings per share (EPS) improved by 17 per cent to $4.31 up from $3.67 in the prior year. Aneal Maharaj, Group Finance Director, drew some examples of why the Group has done so well. “We have eight sectors with 13 business lines and the financial sector and Guardian Media Ltd have done remarkably well. The automotive
Aneal Maharaj, Finance Director, and Norman Sabga, Chairman of the ANSA McAL Group, at the presentation of the 2013 year end audited financial results. PHOTO: MARYANN AUGUSTE
sector has performed beyond our expectation. All of the geographical territories have done well. Guyana has done well. In Barbados, our business has continued to struggle because of the sluggish economy. However, we have confidence that the growth will return. So the growth is coming from the financial sector, the media and the automotive sector. In many of the distribution companies, there has been growth as well,” he said. BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May//Jun Jun | | 25 25
Back in Black with a Profit of US$4.1m Though profits dwindled from US$33.3 million in 2012 to US$4.1 million, Sagicor absorbed its loss from discontinued Europe operations to come out in the black with overall group net income of US$4.1 million for the year ended December 31, 2013. The group lost US$75.5 million from the discontinued operations in 2013, up from US$42 million in 2012. “The Sagicor Group’s continuing operations, comprising our businesses in the Caribbean and in the USA, continued to perform well. Net income from continuing operations of US$79.6 million was realised for the year ended December 31, 2013, (US$75.3 million for 2012); after accounting for capital losses of US$22 million incurred through the group’s participation in the government of Jamaica National Debt Exchange (NDX), and impairment provisions on Government of Grenada bonds,” Stephen McNamara, Sagicor Chairman, said in a statement. Net income from continuing operations attributable to shareholders was US$39.1 million. Before accounting for the shareholders’ portion of the above mentioned capital loss (US$9.3 million), net income from continuing operations attributable to shareholders was US$48.4 BusinessFocus May / Jun
Stephen McNamara, Sagicor Chairman million compared to US $53.1 million for the prior year, 2012. Earnings per common share (EPS) from continuing operations was 12.5 US cents and represented an annualised return on common shareholders’ equity of 7.7 per cent. Sagicor recalled that in 2012, there was a one-off gain of US$20.9 million relating to the recapture of a reinsurance contract. When this one-off gain is excluded from 2012 net income, net income attributable to shareholders for the current year shows a 21 per cent improvement in shareholder results. Continuing operations generated total revenue of US$1.03 billion compared to the 2012 amount of US$1.06 billion. The reduction in total revenue is as a result of a decision to reinsure 90 per cent (US$271.4 million) in new annuity business written in 2013 in the US. Other revenue in 2012 benefited from a gain of US$32 million before tax (US $20.9 million after tax), on the recapture of a previously reinsured block of policies. Net investment income and other income were lower than previous year, at US$279.4 million compared to US$295 million for 2012. Net investment income for the current year was also impacted
negatively by capital losses of US$22 million (US $9.3 million to shareholders) incurred on the Jamaica and Grenada government debt. Benefits incurred from continuing operations totalled US$592.8 million, a reduction from the comparative amount of US$639.4 million in 2012. This reduction is the result of a reinsurance programme introduced in the US segment, where a significant percentage of the business is now being reinsured. Expenses, including agents’ and brokers’ commissions, closed the year at US$348.1 million compared to US$325.1 million for the prior year. This increase in expenses is consistent with the growth in premium revenue. On July 29, 2013, the company entered into an agreement to sell Sagicor Europe (SEL) and its subsidiaries to AmTrust Financial Services, Inc (AmTrust), subject to regulatory approvals. Final regulatory approvals were obtained on December 23, 2013, on which date the sale was completed. The terms of the sale required Sagicor to retain an interest in the run-off of the 2011, 2012 and 2013 underwriting years of account after the syndicate has been formally sold and is subject to a limit.
INTER-REGIONAL MEDICAL COOPERATION
HEALTH & WEALTH
by: Keats Compton
MARTINIQUE MOBILE MEDICAL RESCUE TEAM
University Hospital Center of Martinique
Benefits of Enhancing Linkages With Martinique and Guadeloupe Some time ago I recall listening to a radio programme called ‘lettre de la Caraïbe’ broadcast from Martinique on Radio France International (RCA-RFI, 100.6 FM). St. Lucia was prominently featured, on two counts – French travellers to New York were advised of the imminent launch of the Jet Blue St. Lucia/New York service, and that visitors to St. Lucia need not be concerned about receiving first class healthcare, as there was a world class hospital not more than fifteen minutes from Castries! I was soon disavowed of the notion that either Victoria or Tapion were being referred to, when the announcer identified the hospital as la Meynard in Fort de France, or, to use its official title, the University Hospital Center of Martinique (see www.universityhospitalmartinique. fr, in English)! It is perhaps worth noting that la Meynard is part of the integrated French National Health Service, and not just an island hospital operating independently, and as mentioned above, is literally on our doorstep! La Meynard has long been a referral point for medical cases, including emergency medical evacuations, not only from St. Lucia, for a long time, but arrangements have at best been ad hoc, between practitioners in both jurisdictions. GOSL had also accepted responsibility for certain levels of payment for cases referred by it. With increases in evacuations and referrals the medics in both islands recognized the need to adopt more structured approaches to the existing arrangements. La Meynard recently established a Cooperation Commission which is responsible for formalizing agreements on a hospital to hospital level. The Commission is chaired by Dr. Dabor Resiere, the deputy head of the Critical Care Unit (Intensive Care). Dr. Resiere has discussed areas of cooperation with counterparts at Victoria, Tapion and St. Jude’s, and was recently accepted as a member of the St. Lucia General Medical Council. Successive governments have had on again, off again discussions with la Meynard on establishing a framework for such
cooperation. One such discussion centered on our programme for Universal Healthcare, where la Meynard emerged as the preferred partner from a field comprising Barbados, Cuba, Trinidad & Tobago, and Venezuela. Another was an invitation extended to St Lucia to participate in a French national cancer management pilot project. Sadly, these projects went the way of others following a change of the then existing administrations. We are, however, on the verge of creating an institutional framework, within which individual agreements will be signed between la Meynard and St. Jude’s, Tapion, and Victoria. For the first time ever, the entire hierarchy of la Meynard is expected to meet with its counterparts from the three hospitals on May 2nd to finalize the agreements. St. Lucia will have led the way for what is expected to follow in the rest of the OECS. The accession of Martinique & Guadeloupe to Associate membership of the OECS will open numerous possibilities for regional cooperation, with healthcare already at the forefront. There will be opportunities for training, exchanges, and research, whether into the medicinal properties of the humble guava, antitoxins, or the mapping of the Caribbean Genome, the latter being run by a Martinican doctor at the Paris branch of the Atlantabased Center for Disease Control. The future of healthcare cooperation with Martinique is bright, thanks to the commitment of physicians on both sides of the Channel. A brief history of inter-regional medical cooperation in the Caribbean was recently published in the West Indian Medical Journal, and can be seen at http://myspot.mona.uwi.edu/ wimjopen/article/57 About the Author Keats Compton is a former St. Lucia Consul General to Martinique, Guadeloupe and French Guiana. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
MUST READS Volume 8
most successful leaders always start with the question “why” – not what or how – but “why”. Sinek introduces a “golden circle” theory to explain his concept. In the theory, he explains the difference between the three key types of questions – what, how and why. And Sinek explains why the most important question of these three is “why” in formulating a vision that will inspire others to follow.
Asking the Right Questions by Lyndell Halliday
Asking the right questions is considered fundamental to critical thinking. According to the well-known management guru, Peter Drucker, “the important and difficult job is never to find the right answer; it is to find the right question.” But what are the right questions to ask in the context of business and organizational leadership? This issue of Must Reads explores two books which provide guidance on this topic. This issue’s features are The Five Most Important Questions You will Ever Ask About Your Organization by Peter F. Drucker (Jossey-Bass, 2008) and Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Others to Take Action by Simon Sinek (2011). The Five Most Important Questions You will Ever Ask About Your Organization by Peter F. Drucker The late Peter Drucker, known as the father of modern management was a prolific writer who authored over 25 books. This 144 page book is a brief and easy to read treatise on the essentials of strategic management. While the original target audience of this work was the not for profit sector, this book is just as relevant to the world of business. Ducker’s premise is that there are five key questions every organization must answer in order to be successful. The five questions are: what is our mission, who is our customer, what does the customer value, what are our results and what is our plan. According to Drucker, answering these five questions is the starting point for any organization in order to conduct an internal self-assessment as part of a strategic review or planning exercise. By going through this process, an organization BusinessFocus May / Jun
will be forced to ask hard questions about their strategy and rethink the basis of how it competes. The book is not ground breaking or revolutionary. In fact it is likely that any MBA graduate or leader widely schooled in business strategy will be familiar with much of the material in this book. Nonetheless, many leaders fail to apply this material or simply forget about it over time. The value of Drucker’s writing is that he gives a step by step process to a much neglected review and planning exercise, explains the concepts clearly and succinctly while holding the reader’s hand along the way. Business and organizational strategy is a complex topic that is the subject of an uncountable number of books and research articles. Clearly, there are numerous more detailed and more recent books available. However, for someone looking for a quick how to guide – particularly the small business owner or not for profit organizational leader, Drucker’s Five Most Important Questions provides the perfect start. Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Others to Take Action by Simon Sinek Simon Sinek defines himself quite simply as an optimist who aims to inspire people. And Sinek’s Start with Why in an inspiring and powerful read. Sinek’s premise is that any leader can be visionary and inspiring if he or she learnt from and followed the pattern of the most successful leaders. This pattern, according to Sinek, is that the
Sinek illustrates his ideas with a wide range of examples ranging from business to sports, society and science. The diverse examples of success cited include Apple Computer, the Wright brothers and Martin Luther King. All the successful leaders, Sinek claimed started with “why”. The core essence of this book therefore is about formulating vision, communicating that vision and how that vision leads to success. The sceptical reader is likely to have doubts about the universality of Sinek’s “golden circle” theory, particularly since it does not appear to be backed up by solid empirical research. In addition, Sinek’s writing is at times somewhat repetitive. In spite of these flaws, however, Sinek writes brilliantly and the reader is likely to come away inspired. Many of the examples Sinek uses are powerful and applying Sinek’s concept will challenge readers to think more deeply about their organization and their approach to leadership. At only 256 pages, this is a quick read, but it is engaging and thought provoking. About Author: Lyndell A. Halliday BSc., DipFM, MBA Lyndell Halliday is a business executive who has served in a range of leadership roles across the Caribbean. He is currently employed as the General Manager of Automotive Art (St Lucia) Ltd. Mr Halliday is also a part time facilitator at the National Research and Development Foundation where he teaches Leadership and Strategic Operations Management for the Australia Institute of Business MBA and BBA programmes.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
BusinessFocus May / Jun
Full service business solutions provider, Digicel Business, believes in the value of accelerating the success of any business. With business support services at its core, Digicel Business partnered with Invest St. Lucia to provide financial and technical services, with the objective of getting potential foreign investors to St Lucia to network with local private and public sector institutions. The inaugural Saint Lucia Investment Forum (SLIF) brought together a delegation of approximately 250 high net worth international and regional investor’s business leaders, international media, investment consultants and key strategic partners to meet in plenary sessions and panel discussions on investment projects and opportunities in Saint Lucia. The event included pre-arranged round table B2B networking meetings as well as an investment project showcase during which sponsors/owners will have the opportunity to present their investment projects to participants.
As a partner, the commitment to the success of this forum was met through specific services which were provided through Digicel business. Technical support in helping facilitate with live broadcasts and telecommunication services in the form of Dedicated Internet Access and Wi-Fi availability for over 200 delegates and attendees. "Selecting a telecoms partner for the inaugural Saint Lucia Investment Forum (SLIF) was an important decision. We are extremely privileged to have entered into a partnership with Digicel Business to provide the DIA service to facilitate our live broadcast as well wireless broadband (40+ Mbps) to the SLIF. The team provided the experience and ability to deliver high quality infrastructure, coupled with prompt and responsive technical support,” said Mr. Lyndon Samuel IT Systems Manager of Invest St. Lucia. Digicel Business realized the importance of that kind of ICT support at this event and was ready, willing and more than able to facilitate. “Digicel is very pleased to be a partner of the first ever Saint Lucia Investment Forum. Driving foreign direct investment and by extension, improving the socio-economic development of St Lucia and its people-through regional and international business development is important. Digicel recognizes the significance of this forum and the need to drive interest to St Lucia, its people and what they can bring to the Caribbean and the world is critical”, explains Head of Digicel Business OECS Keigan Cox. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Prime Minister Presents EC$1.25 Billion Budget to Parliament
Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony has presented an EC$1.25 billion (One EC dollar = US$0.37 cents) budget to Parliament on Tuesday 13 May 2014, confident that the fiscal package in which he announced a series of new tax measures would lay the foundation for the country to achieve future economic growth. Prime Minister Anthony said that EC$925.7 million would be used for recurrent expenditure while EC$326.3 million would account for the capital expenditure.
He said the budget would be financed through recurrent revenue of EC$868.49 million, of which tax revenue is projected to be EC$799.57 million and non tax revenue of EC$68.9 million. “This Budget lays the foundation for our youth to inherit a country that is more economically stable; a country that will achieve growth; that will create new jobs; a country that will promote their aspirations, the expression of their minds and souls,” he said. Anthony told legislators that his administration will yield to popular demand and zero-rate value added tax on prescription medication. But he said this would not include vitamins, tonics, energy drinks, food supplements and similar products ostensibly for promoting health and wellbeing. BusinessFocus May / Jun
“However, consumers should understand that this reprieve is short-lived because, come the end of the four-year cycle on April 30, 2016, duty will return on imported prescription medication in accordance with the Common External Tariff. The removal of VAT on prescription medication means that the government will lose EC$2.8 million in revenue,” he said. In addition, Anthony said that the government had agreed to keep in place a VAT exempt list so as to assist the “the poor and indigent”. The government also announced the removal of a subsidy on brown sugar resulting in a marginal increase in the retail price of the commodity. The government said it was also reducing corporate tax so as to allow businesses to have additional funds for further investment. “It is envisaged that such a move will make St Lucia more attractive as a place to do business and thus will result in increased foreign direct investment,” Prime Minister Anthony said, noting that St Lucia’s current rate of 30 per cent tax is higher than that of its counterparts in Barbados, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago. “I propose to reduce the corporate tax rate to 25 per cent but on a phased basis over a two year period. I propose a reduction to 28 per cent in this fiscal year and the further reduction to 25 per cent in the next fiscal year. “Further, an additional tax deduction of EC$10,000 for small and medium-sized businesses will be introduced in the next income year. This will eliminate approximately 800 companies from the tax bracket and will lead to EC$2.2million in savings annually, for small businesses.” Prime Minister Anthony says this incentive is necessary to provide some relief to the business sector as they seek to meet the challenges of a difficult economic environment. Prime Minister Anthony also announced that effective January 1, 2015, more than 2,000 people would be exempted from income tax and approximately 9,443 others will pay less income tax. These changes he said are the results of major adjustments to the income tax regime. “Firstly, the deductible personal allowance will increase from EC$18,000 to EC$21, 000. This represents a further EC$3,000 in allowable deductions and will exempt 2,100 persons from the tax bracket. “Secondly, a reduction in the tax band from four to three, with consequent changes to rate of taxation will redound to the benefit of all tax payers,” Anthony said, adding that taxpayers who now pay 15 per cent on their assessable income will now pay 10 per cent while those paying 20 per cent on their assessable income will now pay 15 per cent. Persons who pay 30 per cent income tax will now pay 28 per cent when the new measure comes into effect from January 1, next year. In his presentation, Prime Minister Anthony, who has warned of the need to reduce the fiscal deficit that stood at EC$2.6 billion at the end of last year, recalled that wages and salaries in the public service represent a significant share of annual expenses, accounting for 48 per cent of recurrent expenditure. “This represents 13 per cent of our GDP (gross domestic product), and is well above the
ECCB (East Caribbean Central Bank) prudential target of nine to 10 percent of GDP. “ Anthony said this issue can no longer be ignored and that any successful attempts to reduce recurrent expenditure must target the wage bill. He said recognising the sensitivity of the issue, his administration has explored many options. “Our Government has repeatedly made a point that we want to preserve employment. Therefore, we do not want to go the route of Barbados with the retrenchment of public servants. We do not want to send any public officers home. “However, to do that, to keep the current level of employment in the public service, some sacrifices must be endured by all public officers. While some propose that we keep wages constant at their current levels, this is no longer sufficient. It does not solve the serious problem that we are facing. The current wage levels are too high and the burden of meeting these payments too heavy.” Prime Minister Anthony said, there “the only amenable solution available to government is to seek a reduction in current wages and salaries. “We simply have to reduce our recurrent deficit. We cannot continue to borrow to meet the cost of recurrent expenditure,” Anthony said, adding the government has started talks with public sector unions, the intention being “to arrive at a consensus and agree on a memorandum of understanding that will bind both sides. “The government has invited the unions to indicate its suggestions to reduce expenditure. The government’s preferred approach is dialogue, discussion and consensus. However, should it be impossible to arrive at consensus then the government will have to act in the best interest of the country,” Anthony told legislators.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Jamaica Signs Agreement Regional Cargo Shipping Hub
Remittances to Latin America and the Caribbean to hit US$84bn in 2015
Chinese Company to Build Controversial
Project Dr Omar Davies The Jamaican government has signed a preliminary agreement with one of China’s leading construction companies China Harbour Engineering Co (CHEC) for the development of a controversial transshipment hub off its southwest coast, Jamaica’s state information service has reported. The framework agreement with China Harbour Engineering Co (CHEC) seeks to develop the Portland Bight Protected Area southwest of the capital and popularly called the Goat Islands, which are inhabited by insects and small reptiles and covered with wild vegetation. The area surrounding the islands serves as a breeding ground for fish and other marine species, which has led to stiff resistance to the project from local environmentalists. “We treasure the preservation of the environment as much as any other group, and we are concerned about the human beings and the plight of poverty, and the impact which that has on the environment,” the Jamaica Information Service (JIS) quoted Omar Davies, the cabinet minister responsible for the development at a private signing ceremony. The government said that the project, part of a larger Logistics Hub, would create 2,000 jobs during the construction phase and 10,000 jobs when it is completed. “A project which does not harm the environment, and will improve people’s living standards, must be explored,” quoted Davies, calling the deal a “win-win situation”. The hub is being planned as an addition to the existing Port Bustamante in Kingston and is designed to facilitate faster distribution of container cargo, mainly from China, throughout Jamaica and the rest of the Caribbean region. The Chinese company has estimated that the project will take five years to complete. CHEC is a global contractor with 50 overseas branches and is a subsidiary of China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC). It is also the contractor for the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri expansion project in Guyana. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Remittances sent to Latin America and the Caribbean will grow to hit US$84bn in 2015 from the US$64bn expected in 2012, according to the World Bank's latest "Migration and development" brief. Remittances to Latin America and the Caribbean are supported by a recovering economy and an improving labor market in the US but moderated by a weak European economy. The region will, thus, see a modest growth of 2.9% in 2012, according to the brief. But remittance flows will pick up steam in the coming years, expanding by 7.6% in 2013, 10.3% in 2014 and 11% in 2015, in line with the expected growth for developing countries. Remittance flows to the developing world are expected to exceed earlier estimates and total US$406bn this year, an increase of 6.5% over 2011, the World Bank said. However, despite the growth in remittance flows overall to developing countries, the continuing global economic crisis is dampening remittance flows to some regions, with Europe and Central Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa especially affected. "Although migrant workers are, to a large extent, adversely affected by the slow growth in the global economy, remittance volumes have remained remarkably resilient, providing a vital lifeline to not only poor families but a steady and reliable source of foreign currency in many poor remittances recipient countries," said Hans Timmer, Director of the World Bank's development prospects group. The World Bank said it expects continued growth in remittance flows to all regions of the world, although persistent unemployment in Europe and hardening attitudes towards migrant workers in some places present serious downside risks. HIGH COSTS, NEW REGULATIONS Another obstacle to growth of remittance flows is the high cost of sending money, which averaged 7.5% in the third quarter of 2012 for the top 20 bilateral remittance corridors and 9% for all countries for which cost data are available, the World Bank said. The brief also discusses the implementation of the new remittance regulations in the US and Europe and concludes that these regulations are likely to lower remittance costs in the long run by increasing competition and improving consumer protection.
The Recently Opened Sandals Luxury Resort
INVESTING IN “THE CARIBBEAN”
IS GOOD BUSINESS Says Gordon”Butch” Stewart – Chairman of SANDALS RESORTS INTERNATIONAL The Caribbean region remains a great business investment and still offers “the single best holiday product in the world.” So insists Chairman of Sandals Resorts International, Hon. Gordon “Butch” Stewart, OJ, CD, Hon. LLD, the man who built a tourism empire in the Caribbean from the ground-up and today remains active in investments across the region. The Jamaican-born Stewart’s pearls of wisdom to global investors come as he gears up to receive the 2014 Invest Caribbean Now Leadership Award this June 4, 2014 at the Harvard Club in New York City. Invest Caribbean Now, the biggest global summit on the Caribbean outside the region, is honoring Stewart this year for his investment, commitment and dedication to the Caribbean “and for inspiring us all.” Past ICN honorees have included Sir Richard Branson and Royal Caribbean Cruises International.
Stewart, former CEO of Air Jamaica and President of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association, calls it “an honor to be considered a leader among those serving and succeeding in the Caribbean.” “My work here, the companies I have built, the jobs we have created and the people we have served are the best example of what is possible in the Caribbean and why we must continue to invest here at home,” he added. “Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart is a name that has become synonymous with Caribbean tourism globally,” said ICN Founder and Chairman Felicia J. Persaud. “Mr. Stewart is an inspiration to all Caribbean entrepreneurs. He embodies the core value of what can be accomplished through vision, leadership and hard work. There is no one more deserving to receive the prestigious ICN Leadership Award in 2014 and we are honored he will be joining us to accept this award.”
Meanwhile, Stewart warns Caribbean governments to consider the lasting effects of the investment they accept on their resources and their constituencies, especially as he puts it, “it’s not simply about land development or acquisition but about investing in people, giving them the resources and opportunity to contribute in real, meaningful ways.” “Human capital will always return the greatest reward and is where thoughtful leaders spend their time and their resources,” said the former President of the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica and the country’s one time director of tourism. “As a private investor in the region, our footprint is something we think about every day and we are making conscientious decisions to be good, effective corporate citizens. The fact is job creation leads to immense opportunity in education and no other sector is capable of distributing wealth as rapidly and efficiently as the tourism dollar.” BusinessFocus May / Jun | 35
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Tens of Thousands of Jobs at Risk With Threat to IFCs Bahamian PM hits back at efforts to destroy offshore financial sector
Bahamian Prime Minister Perry Christie
Bahamian Prime Minister Perry Christie has warned that tens of thousands of Caribbean citizens could become impoverished if the region's offshore financial services sector is destroyed. Christie, speaking at the Third Caribbean Conference on the International Financial Services Sector in Nassau, made the declaration against the background of criticisms of the region's offshore financial sector as tax havens with inadequate regulation, making them a dumping ground for financial criminals. "Some have used their power either unilaterally or in small groups of highpowered nations to impose their will, arguing that there is something fundamentally immoral, something intrinsically sinister, about the accumulation of wealth in offshore jurisdictions," said Christie, reiterating a point he made last year in his address BusinessFocus May / Jun
to the General Assembly of the United Nations in defence of IFCs in the region. "We reject that premise and we criticize in the strongest possible terms the efforts of some to maim and cripple, if not destroy, the offshore economies within our region." To the contrary of the criticisms, Christie argued that many of the regions antimoney-laundering, anti-terrorism funding, and anti-criminal regulatory regimes are "far more robust and demonstrably far more effective than the corresponding regulatory regimes in many of the same countries that are leading the fight against us." Bahamas has been one of the Caribbean's leading IFCs, behind the famed Cayman Islands. Indeed, after tourism, the financial services industry of The Bahamas is the country's second largest industry, accounting for almost 20 per cent of GDP. Barbados and Antigua are among the other regional countries that have relatively vibrant IFCs, which provide tax advantages to international investors. "We believe that the sector represents true tax competition and, in the great majority of cases, it affords an honest opportunity for families and individuals alike to protect their privacy while accumulating lawfully earned capital for themselves and future generations," Christie argued. He added: "To destroy this sector in the Caribbean would effectively cause tens of thousands of newly empowered middleclass citizens to slip back into poverty or to migrate to the developed world." Ryan Pinder, the Financial Services Minster of The Bahamas, said the country has a very serious approach to the preservation of the industry, to ensuring that it is regarded as well regulated and that its rules are consistent with international best practices. Pinder supported his argument by noting, for example, that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) declared recently
in its Financial Sector Assessment Programme that financial system oversight in the Bahamas has improved greatly over the last decade. He added that The Bahamas has been a leader in complying with international initiatives aimed at facilitating information exchange in an effort to protect against instances of global financial crime and tax evasion. Among these international initiatives is the controversial Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which demands that foreign banks provide information to America's Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on any customer deemed a "US person" if they have an account with more than US$50,000. In each instance The Bahamas has preserved its reputation and integrity by complying with the international best practices, undertaking its responsibility in the fight against financial crime and adhering to the principle of working in an environment where there is level playing field" said Pinder. The three-day conference was being hosted by the Ministry of Financial Services of The Bahamas in collaboration with Caribbean Export Development Agency (CEDA). CEDA Executive Director Pamela Coke Hamilton said, given the significance of the financial services sector to the region's development, the regional agency is committed to working with stakeholders to find solutions to the challenges facing the sector, particularly its label as a tax haven that has given it a "distorted and negative perception", she said. "Called upon to assume a more integral role in defending the interests of the regional financial sector, Caribbean Export has from the outset offered its support," said Coke Hamilton, noting that it is part of the task force for the promotion and protection of the Caribbean financial services sector. However, the CEDA boss urged regional IFCs to play their part in shaping the environment in which they function and continuously focus on increasing competitiveness. "I would therefore like to challenge our regional IFCs to move beyond stating grievances about external threats and move towards finding practical (solutions) for keeping the sector vibrant," she said. "We may try to mitigate the global threats we face as a region, but there is only so much we can control. What we can control, however, are the competitive positions of the IFCs which operate in our member states."
US$100-M Investment in Haiti Brewery
A worker cleans empty bottles of Prestige Beer at the Heineken/Brana Brewery SA in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (PHOTO: AP) The Dutch brewery giant Heineken recently announced that it is investing US$100 million in its Haiti production plant that makes the popular lager Prestige. The relatively large investment is significant because many international companies have been reluctant to spend money in Haiti because of a business climate hampered by red tape, allegations of corruption and poor infrastructure. But Jose Matthijsse, General Director of the National Brewery of Haiti which is owned by Heineken, said the Dutch company is eager to invest more in the Caribbean country because political stability and cooperation have improved under the current government. Heineken purchased the Haitian brewery in 2011, and owns 95 per cent of the company that produces Prestige Beer. The remaining five per cent is held by Diageo Ireland, the company that makes Guinness Stout. About one-fifth of the new investment has already gone toward construction of a second 24,300-square foot production line that was opened during December in the same facility in Portau-Prince. The addition will allow the brewery to double output, for 40,000 more cases of Prestige Beer and other beverages produced every day. The new production line has also enabled the brewery to introduce a 16-ounce bottle of Prestige Beer. The rest of the investment will be used to further increase lager production, manufacture more bottles and to purchase items such as trucks and generators. The brewery has long been limited in how much lager it produces by the number of the signature amber-hued bottles available at any one time. People tend to buy the lager in bulk because it's cheaper that way, which can delay the return of bottles for deposit. Because the bottles can be returned, the brewery has often limited its past production based on how many containers are available. Past manufacturing of new bottles has never been enough to make up for the losses. "All Haitians know that at times their favourite beer, Prestige, is not available for consumption," Matthijsse said. "And that has been a frustration over the past years ... So it was about time that the capacity be increased."
CHOOSE PIGEON ISLAND NATIONAL LANDMARK FOR ALL YOUR SPECIAL EVENTS
Entertain and Celebrate at the Pigeon Island National Landmark. Weddings • Receptions • Birthday Parties • Private Dinners • Staff Retreats • Vow Renewals • Christmas Parties • New Year’s Celebrations • Concerts • Anniversaries • And so much more Contact the SAINT LUCIA NATIONAL TRUST to secure your booking today! Tel: 1(758) 452-5005 or 453-1495 • Email: email@example.com Web: www.slunatrust.org
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Bahamas to Build a New US$39m Trans-Shipment Port in Abaco Architectural Rendering of the Proposed New Port in Abaco, Bahamas
China Harbour Engineering Construction Awarded the Contract to Build the New Facility
CHINA Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) recently announced its plans to construct a US$39-million transshipment facility in The Bahamas, scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2014. The official launch of the North Abaco Port project came through a recent town hall meeting in Abaco, The Bahamas. The construction phase of the project is estimated to take roughly two years and will be funded by the Export Import Bank of China and the government of The Bahamas. This facility is an investment that will provide a major boost to The Bahamian economy. Deputy Prime Minister of the Bahamas and Minister of Works Philip Brave Davis expressed his support of the project saying there are many benefits to stem from this new port.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
"This development is a modern infrastructure transportation facility that will enable international trade and generate new business," said the Deputy Prime Minister. "It will engage Bahamian service providers and suppliers. And, of course, we expect our trade between China and Bahamas will improve." Principal of CHEC Bahamas, Felix Chang, said a minimum of one-third of the project's investment would be shared throughout the community directly and indirectly. Already, more than 70 local companies have been contracted for works in the past several months leading up to the start of the construction. "There will be job opportunities, skills training, the purchase of construction material and equipment supplied locally," said Chang. "There will be openness and transparency, community activities, Bahamian and Chinese cultural efforts and sponsorship of sports competitions."
Bahamian Deputy Prime Minister Davis reassured that his ministry was working along with CHEC to make sure the development happened on time, on schedule and used the maximum amount of Bahamian services. "The topographic and hypo-graphic surveys for dredging have been completed, geotechnical work and coastal engineering work have all been completed," said Davis. "The port is a two-year project and there's at least $39 million being pumped into North Abaco and The Bahamas at large and many will benefit from this." This announcement comes fast on the heels of the procurement of another project in the region â€” the signing of an agreement for an industrial park and port in La Brea, Trinidad and Tobago valued at US $593 million.
West Indies General
Insurance Company Limited
“WORKING TO BUILD A STRONGER NATION” Your home is the biggest investment you will make in your lifetime. Caribbean Metals Limited ensures that your home will be secure from foundation to roof, with our commitment to the strength and quality of the products we sell. Is it time to replace your leaking/ outdated roof? Or you’re searching for a top quality – yet affordable METAL ROOFING SYSTEM? Our roofing systems are designed especially for those who want the very best in modern roofing and are tested in the harshest environments from sun, rain and winds.
CARIBBEAN METALS LTD VISIT OUR OFFICE AT UNION INDUSTRIAL ESTATE, UNION, ST LUCIA TEL: 1(758) 450-2249 • FAX: 1(758) 450-2989 VIEUX FORT TEL: 1(758) 454 (EVER)3837 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org WEBSITE: www.caribbeanmetalslimited.com www.facebook.com /caribbeanmetalslimited
Logistics & Brokerage Services Inc. "Beyond the boundaries of expectations!"
• • • • • •
Customs Brokerage Freight Forwarding Inventory Management Transportation Logistics Commercial Packing and Unpacking
Find us in the LIME Business Complex, Corinth, Gros Islet P.O. Box 1506, Castries, St. Lucia Tel: (758) 450-4869 • Fax: (758) 450-3799 • Mobile: (758) 484-6700 Email: email@example.com • Website: kpllogistics.net BusinessFocus May / Jun |
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Trinidad & Tobago Finance Minister
"Venture Capital Can Restore Regional Growth" Says TT Finance Minister Venture capital is one avenue through which the region can realise its true potential, as a way to restore economic growth and transformation, according to Trinidad & Tobago Finance Minister Larry Howai. “We have to challenge ourselves to facilitate a complete change from the usual way of doing things…that will require us to be innovative and move beyond the immediate focus on conventional economic expansion and stimulation,” he said in his address at the recently held Caribbean Centre for Money and Finance’s Venture Capital seminar at the Hyatt Regency (Trinidad), Port of Spain. Venture Capital is money provided by investors to start-up firms and small businesses with perceived long-term growth potential. It is an important source of funding for start-ups that do not have access to capital markets—or even traditional financing from banks. It typically entails high risk for the investor, but it has the potential for above-average returns. “The Caribbean region does have some progress to make in this direction as we BusinessFocus May / Jun
have been overly reliant on traditional debt and equity financing arrangements to finance commercial activity. Venture capital is an invaluable, welcomed source of innovation financing if we are to operationalise unique Caribbean businesses and ideas for the 21st century,” he said. Venture capitalists also offer extremely valuable services to nascent companies to ensure that they build and grow; this involvement provides a fertile breeding ground for knowledge transfer, strategic counsel, sound governance and application of cutting edge commercial best practices, Howai said. The task therefore, is to ensure that ours is an accommodating venture capital ecosystem to attract not just funding, but also the expertise to aid the transformation process. “The enabling environment created for innovative venture capital firms to thrive also serves as a major area of reform benefitting the wider private sector as a powerful engine of growth, including the promotion of sound corporate governance and entrepreneurship,” he added.
The willingness to undertake risk and fail also makes venture capital unique for our economic transformation,” he continued. Venture capital also plays an essential role in retaining talented professionals whose human capital is essential for economic transformation. “These are benefits we cannot overlook. However, we need to understand the reality of the venture capital industry. Venture capitalists are not in the business of giving away money. They are prepared to take risk in the expectation of above normal rates of return. They require detailed business plans that quantify properly the expected rates of return and that clearly identify and evaluate associated risk. In many instances, young entrepreneurs may not be ready for the rigors’ of the venture capital industry. The solution therefore also requires us to step out of the strict venture capital regime and embrace additional structures including business incubator schemes and angel financing and, at a different level of sophistication, private equity funds,” he said.
St Lucia to Consider Implementation of Economic Citizenship Programme Government to Appoint Task Force to Explore Feasibility Delivering the traditional throne speech to the opening of the fourth session of the tenth parliament in early May, Governor General Dame Pearlette Louisy said the time has arrived for St Lucia to examine the case for defining and broadening the framework under which citizenship might be offered, as part of investing here. Dame Pearlette announced that the government will appoint a special task force comprising persons from various sectors to examine the programmes of other countries and make recommendations for the consideration of cabinet. "It is my government's hope that this matter will be addressed with urgency during the current parliamentary year," the Governor General told the Parliament. She said it is right for St Lucians to guard the grant of citizenship to others jealously. "My government understands the feeling among many that the offering of citizenship is a sacred right only to be
When it matters most...
bestowed upon persons born in St Lucia, even though our constitution provides citizenship to persons by descent or by marriage," Dame Pearlette noted. She also said St Lucia's laws allow citizenship to persons who have proved themselves worthy citizens by their commitment to the country, evidenced by their length of stay. "The reality is that we do grant citizenship to persons who invest in our country and demonstrate a commitment to it," the Governor General told the house. She disclosed that during this year the government will undertake a review of investment schemes offered by countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Saint Kitts, Austria and Portugal. "Our intention is to broaden the scope of incentives offered to investors to make St Lucia more attractive as an investment location," the Governor General said.
You never think about what happens behind the scenes so you can have power whenever you need it, and at the lowest rate in the Eastern Caribbean.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
IMF: Latin America and the Caribbean in Low Gear in 2014
By : Vangie Bhagoo- Ramrattan On Tuesday April 8, 2014, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) released its World Economic Outlook (WEO). From the discussions, the IMF believes that the global economy will be supported by the stronger performance of the advanced economies, particularly that of the United States. Expectations for an improved economic outturn in the United States is likely to outstrip the weakness in some of the emerging markets, such as some of the infamous BRIC economies as well as weakness in Japan and Europe. Overall World Output growth of 3.6 per cent is projected for 2014, further increasing to 3.9 per cent in 2015 from 2013’s growth of 3.0 per cent. Indeed, expectations for the emerging market and developing economies are muted, when compared to previous years, with growth of 4.9 per cent forecasted for 2014 and 5.3 per cent for 2015. In 2012, output in these economies was registered at 5.0 per cent. Economic activity in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region is expected to remain subdued in 2014 and 2015, constrained by lower commodity prices, tighter financial conditions and supply bottlenecks in some countries. The IMF also BusinessFocus May / Jun
noted that growth in the Caribbean region remains inhibited by high indebtedness as well as weak competitiveness. The LAC region is forecasted to post growth of 2.5 per cent in 2014 from an estimated 2.75 per cent in 2013. Within the Latin American region, performances will be mixed, with expectations for Mexico on the optimistic side due to the country’s ongoing reforms in the energy and telecommunications sectors, which will boost medium-to-long term economic prospects. Colombia, Peru and Chile are also expected to experience an uptick in economic growth because of fairly strong domestic consumption underpinned by low jobless rates as well as solid growth in real wages. On the flipside, Brazil is expected to remain in “low gear” with growth projected to slow to 1.8 per cent in 2014 from 2.3 per cent in 2013. The Brazilian Central Bank in April decided to end its monetary tightening cycle in an effort to shift policy from tempering inflation to boosting economic growth as private investment remains weak. Argentina and Venezuela are both expected to underperform as “loose macroeconomic policies have generated high inflation and a drain on foreign exchange reserves.”
Growth in the Caribbean region is forecasted to increase to 3.3 per cent in 2014 from an estimated 2.8 per cent in 2013. The improved prospects are related to the expected improvement in the external economy and its impact upon the tourism-dependent economies in the region. However, the restrained expectations for the Caribbean are linked to the fiscal inflexibility, which many governments face. Indeed, the region continues to grapple with weak fiscal accounts as well as the associated high and rising public sector debt. In 2012, tourism-dependent Caribbean countries had an average public sector gross debt of 87.4 per cent of GDP while the commodity exporters’ average was significantly lower at 50.9 per cent of GDP. Grenada and Jamaica recorded a ratio of over 100 per cent of GDP (109.5 per cent and 146.1 per cent of GDP, respectively), while only three countries had a debt-toGDP ratio of under 50 per cent. Furthermore, interest payments on existing debt stock in the most highly indebted countries with rising debt ratios, are already in the range of 16 per cent to 41 per cent of total government revenues. Given the challenges of the past few years for the region, in terms of poor tourist
arrivals, low capital inflows (foreign direct investments, remittances, tourism receipts) and high commodity prices, governments in the region had little muscle to implement counter-cyclical fiscal policies and those countries that ramped up spending are now feeling the pressure. First Citizens Research and Analytics concurs with the IMF forecasts for a subdued economic performance in 2014. The Caribbean region continues to face significant challenges stemming from unsustainable external positions and heavy external public debt loads. Within the past two year, several countries have had to resort to debtrestructuring exercises including St Kitts and Nevis, Jamaica and Belize. Grenada, last year failed to service its debt obligations and has recently entered into a three-year Extended Credit Facility Arrangement with the IMF for US$21.9 million. The main objectives of the programme are to restore fiscal and debt sustainability, boost long-term growth through structural reforms and safeguard the resilience of the financial sector. According to the IMF, “the fiscal adjustment will be complemented by a comprehensive debt restructuring, which will aim to secure meaningful debt reduction, address financing shortfalls, and put Grenada’s public debt firmly on a downward path towards the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) regional target of 60 percent of GDP by 2020.” Some of the risks that the Caribbean will face in the medium term are: • Tourism sector likely to slowly recover and not to precrisis levels; • With deteriorating fiscal accounts and onerous debt profiles, there exists the possibility of more credit events in more vulnerable countries. Caribbean countries have limited borrowing room and have endured difficult fiscal adjustment processes; • Lack of monetary policy as a macroeconomic policy tool, given the fixed exchange currency regimes in place for many of the Caribbean countries; • Exchange rate pressures due to the fixed exchange rate framework within which several countries operate, given the expectations of a slowdown in capital inflows; • The uncertainty of the PetroCaribe— Caribbean economies are highly vulnerable to a sharp spike in energy import costs as Venezuela is beginning to signal its growing discontent with supplying much of the region with subsidised oil. If Venezuela amends the terms of or dismantles the agreement, the region’s already weak external position can come under further pressure. Particularly for countries which maintain a fixed exchange rate: any reduction in subsidised oil will result in higher oil import bill and erosion of foreign exchange reserves. We believe that the Caribbean growth will be supported by: • Improved external economy, which will drive export growth; • The partial recovery of the world economy could create some space for boosting regional export volumes, exports of services (particularly tourism) and remittances receipts. About the Author: Vangie Bhagoo-Ramrattan is the Head of First Citizens Research & Analytics
T&T Poised to be Financial Centre of the Region
Trade Minister Vasant Bharath, second from right, in conversation with Franco Siu Chong, Chairman of theT&T International Financial Centre (TTIFC). At left is Sheeba Thomas, Vice President of NIIT Uniqua and TTIFC CEO Varun Maharaj. PHOTO: MARYANN AUGUSTE. Trinidad &Tobago is well positioned to be the International Financial Centre of the region, Varun Maharaj, Chairman of the T&T International Financial Centre (IFC), said recently. “Unlike many of the competing destinations, T&T, with a Standard and Poor's rating of A, is a vibrant and stable economy with world class infrastructure and the availability of trained, English speaking financial services and accounting personnel,” he said. “We are located within the same time zone as several financial centres such as New York and Toronto. We boast of well developed telecoms infrastructure. These factors make T&T ideal for back and middle offices to support financial services.” Maharaj , who was speaking at the launch of a Banking Process Outsourcing (BPO) Pilot Training Programme at the School of Accounting and Management, St Augustine, said opportunities for the financial sector continue to grow. “T&T is the only country in the Western Hemisphere with a niched, sector specific value proposition. This is given the skill sets of our human capital and as well as the population size,” he said. Maharaj said the IFC's role is focused on the facilitation of foreign investment in the banking, financial services and insurance sector. “It is our role to develop sector specific incentives and engage the Government support to transform T&T into ready-financial services hub. The T&T IFC is committed to developing T&T as a near offshore financial services destination through its end-toend investment facilitation and support services,” he said.
BusinessFocus May / Jun | 43
ECONOMY & TRADE FOCUS
Trinidad Economy Experiencing Robust Growth
Central Bank of Trinidad THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) says Trinidad and Tobago is experiencing more robust growth after several years of "sub-par performance." After visiting the twin-island republic to conduct the country's annual Article IV consultation, an IMF mission, led by Elie Canetti, projected that the economy will grow around 2 1/2 per cent in 2014 after around 1 1/2 per cent growth in 2013, "with the end of maintenance-related outages in the energy sector". Canetti said the non-energy sector was "fairly buoyant" in 2013, "which we anticipate will continue to be the case in 2014." He said the core inflation has been "relatively quiescent," though it picked up to 2.7 per cent in February 2014. "The country's external position remains healthy, with external reserves at US$10 billion, while the Heritage and Stabilisation Fund's assets continue to grow," the mission said. "Serious data deficiencies hinder a more complete assessment of balance of payments developments, but our best estimate is that the current account surplus should continue to be in double digits, as a per cent of GDP (Gross Domestic Product), in 2014 thanks to a strong rebound in energy exports from 2013," it added. However, Canetti said there are signs that the growth of imports, notably automobiles, may be picking up. On the capital account, he said there is anecdotal evidence that portfolio outflows are responding to interest rate differentials that have moved marginally in favour of investing in US dollar-denominated assets. The IMF mission projects a fiscal deficit of about 1 1/2 per cent of GDP in 2013/14, closer to balance than envisaged in the budget statement. However, it said this is due in part to "one-off developments," without which the deficit would be closer to 3 1/2 per cent of GDP. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Looking ahead, the mission said the case for expansionary fiscal policies to support the economy is waning amid signs that excess capacity, notably in the labour market, is rapidly being used up. Thus, it said the smaller budget deficit is welcome, adding that there is a "strong case" to continue fiscal consolidation into the medium-term but based on policy changes that "durably improve" the structure of non-energy-based revenues and spending. The IMF mission welcomed the government's efforts to significantly reduce or eliminate arrears on energy subsidies, value-added tax (VAT) refunds and to suppliers. "With excess liquidity in the banking system rising to TT$7.1 billion through March 2014, monetary policy will have to continue contending with a structural liquidity overhang for the foreseeable future." In addition, the mission said the time for withdrawing the accommodative monetary stance of the past few years may be coming nearer, "as the unemployment rate has fallen meaningfully, credit to consumers, and for real estate is growing at a relatively rapid pace, core inflation has risen, and interest rate differentials are shifting in favour of US interest rates." While credit to business has continued to fall, the mission said this appears to be due primarily to a lack of demand, in part given firms' already ample cash resources. The mission said the foreign exchange market has been relatively tight recently. Despite significant dollar injections from the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (CBTT), it said recent reports suggest that foreign exchange shortages, while temporary, have been fairly widespread. The IMF mission, however, said increases in foreign exchange inflows may soon help to alleviate shortages, although some uncertainty about the availability of foreign exchange may be providing an incentive to hold larger than usual cash balances in foreign currency. The mission said it looks forward to seeing the impact of a new system of allocating foreign exchange that commenced April 1, but called on the CBTT to consider moving towards a more flexible, market-clearing system, should significant unanticipated shortfalls recur.
MOU Signed to Fight Regional Fraud
Pointe Seraphine, P.O. Box 195, Castries, St. Lucia Tel: 1 (758) 456-2600
Audit • Tax • Advisory
www.grantthornton.lc A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), aimed at thwarting illegal activity has been signed between four entities in the region that are responsible for the non-bank financial sector. Speaking just before he and officials of the securities regulators in Jamaica, Trinidad and the Eastern Caribbean signed a MOU for the exchange of information and co-operation and consultation, Chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), Sir Frank Alleyne, maintained that the scams that have taken place across the world have occurred because of a lack of due diligence. "Whether countries are large or small, we have to collaborate if we are going to protect the public interest. We have to protect investors; there must be confidence; they must have a certain level of confidence when they put their resources in a particular enterprise. The commission is integral to ensuring that the information which is made available to the investing public is accurate and is reliable," he said. To date, only four entities have signed the MOU. The group which was established following a meeting of the Council of the Securities Regulators of America in 2002, seeks to provide a forum to discuss and resolve regulatory issues important to the Caribbean securities market development and regulation. According to Sir Frank, the MOU is very specific in terms of the steps which have to be taken as it relates to requests for information. "We are entering this agreement because we are confident from our experience that we can trust one another; that is critical. We have full confidence in Barbados, that if we contact our partners in Jamaica, in the OECS, in Trinidad in Tobago, in Guyana, that what we will receive is full support, complete due diligence and they will assist us because they know that by assisting Barbados, or assisting the OECS they are helping themselves," he said.
• • • • •
Construction Project Management Construction Management Renovations Building & Designing
A: P. O. Box CP 5452, Hillcrest,Castries T: 1(758) 452-0009 F: 1(758) 452-0009 M: (758) 721-1770 or 460-5166 E: firstname.lastname@example.org BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Catering To Every Occasion Jn Baptiste anticipates teaching and developing young interested people skills in decorating for all sorts of events. In an excited tone, Jn Baptiste expressed to Business Focus that she would also like to organize an annual Bridal Pageant, to promote St Lucia as the best Wedding/ Honeymoon Destination in the Caribbean. The ardent event planner says she would like also to have kids’ summer camps in décor and planning for their own birthday parties.
Floralight Bridal Creations is a full service decorating business located in the heart of the city of Castries. From gorgeous weddings, fun parties to funeral settings, Floralight Bridal Creations caters to your every occasion. Floralight Bridal Creations was created in the living room of Frances Jn. Baptiste 19 years ago. Experimenting with dried flowers to transform the appearance of her living space, Jn Baptiste, a full time teacher came up with the idea to embark on her own business venture, A Bridal Store. Jn Baptiste uses fabrics, flowers whether natural or artificial, balloon decorations and anything that will create the desired setting or theme for her clients. Floralight Bridal Creations caters to occasions island wide and has a long list of frequent clients such as LIME and other corporate entities.
Future Plans Through great sacrifice, effective time management and a stirring passion for decorating and designing, Jn Baptiste has been able to successfully commit herself to both teaching on weekdays and catering to her own projects after school and on weekends. She says that her plans for the near future entail being a qualified full time event planner. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Bridal gowns, tuxedos, bridal umbrellas and canes, arches, veils , crowns, fabric for decorating and table center pieces, table cloth, skirtings, chair covers, runners, sashes, pullovers , tables and red carpet etc.
WE SELL Bridal accessories, balloons, guest books, bridal bouquets, ribbons, unity candles and garters, cake boxes, corsages, feathers, flowers and bridal shower gifts and accessories for baby showers. WE DECORATE FOR Corporate events, birthdays, weddings, christenings, first communions, parties, stores, surprise parties, baby and bridal showers, schools, Christmas, Jazz, Jounen Kweyol, Old year’s Night, Valentine’s Day and funerals. We also sell sympathy wreaths of all sizes, colour and designs. We deliver our wreaths. KIDS PARTY BAG - our newest section for kids, recently opened a few months ago. Selling kids’ theme party décor such as: BEN 10, DORA, PRINCESS, SPIDER MAN, BATMAN, SNOW WHITE, STRAWBERRY SHORT CAKE, posters and more.
At Kids Party Bag we sell piñatas. We also rent cotton candy, popcorn and snow cone machines. We have adult size costumes in batman, spider man, snow white and strawberry shortcake used to surprise kids. Coming soon is the availability of trampolines and bouncing castles. List of places we've decorated include LIME, Digicel, National Bank, RBTT Bank, Royal Bank, Bank of Saint Lucia, JQ Mall, Pigeon Island, Sandals Grande and La Toc, Royal St. Lucian, Golf Country Club, schools, churches, Gaiety, Lucelec and many others. We attract our customers through radio and television advertisements, exhibitions, business cards, social networks, annual pageants, sponsorships, word of mouth and promotions.
Corporate Events • Birthdays • Weddings • Christenings • First Communions Parties • Stores • Surprise Parties • Baby & Bridal Showers • Schools • Christmas Jazz • Jounen Kweyol • Old year’s Night • Valentine’s Day & Funerals
Opening Hrs. Mon-Thursday: 9am-4:30pm • Fri: 9am-5pm • Sat: 9am-1pm Brazil Street, Castries, Saint Lucia • Tel: (758) 453-7075 or 384-7898 BusinessFocus May / Jun | 47 email: email@example.com • facebook.com/floral/floralightbridal
The inaugural Saint Lucia Investment Forum took place at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Beach Resort from May 4-6, 2014 under the theme Specialized Opportunities for Smart Business. The Forum, which focused on Niche Tourism, Smart Manufacturing and Infrastructure attracted over 200 participants from as far as Asia, Europe, Canada, North and South America and the Caribbean Region, who engaged in networking, business to business and business to Government meetings over the 3-day event, which has been highly rated by both overseas attendees and the local business community. Saint Lucia is expected to realize US $200 million in investments over the next two years that can be directly attributed to the leads generated from the Forum. Other stated deliverables include the establishment of a convention center to host, among other things, the 2016 edition of the Saint Lucia Investment Forum; the resuscitation of at least two stalled tourism projects; and ensuring that Saint Lucia has greater visibility in the international market as an ideal investment location.
BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May / / Jun Jun
|| 48 48
Investment Forum 2014
BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May / / Jun Jun || 49 49
BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May / / Jun Jun
|| 50 50
Over US $200 Million in New Investment Projected at the Conclusion of SLIF 2014 true success of this new mechanism aimed at generating investments. “We have four very clear deliverables – the first being a notional one of having a greater presence in the international investment market,” he explained. “The second one is that we want to resuscitate at least two of the stalled tourism investments. We have also said that while we were happy to be at the Sandals Grande, it does not conduce to the ideal investment conference location that it should be, and so we have said that one of the clear deliverables is that there should be at least a new conference or convention center by the time we have the second Forum in 2016. And the final deliverable,” noted Andrew, “is that between the end of this Forum and the start of the next Forum, we should see at least US $200 million in new investment flows that could be tied directly to the Forum.”
(L-R – Gordon Charles, President – Private Sector Council & Chamber of Commerce; McHale Andrew – CEO, Invest Saint Lucia (ISL); Costello Michel – Chairman, ISL; Nadia Wells-Hyacinth – Investment Services Director, ISL Over 60 potential investors, investment brokers, project owners and financiers from as far as Asia, Europe, Canada, North and South America and the Caribbean Region, participated in the Saint Lucia Investment Forum which took place from May 4-6 at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Beach Resort. Speaking at a post event press briefing, Chairman of Invest Saint Lucia, Costello Michel intimated that the execution of the event itself was a success, given the opportunity presented for networking among foreign participants, the wider local business community and Government officials. However, he was quick to underscore the fact that this Investment Forum was merely the beginning of the long road ahead as it relates to realizing investments from the leads generated.
An average of 185 people attended each day of the 3-day Event. Director of Investment Services at Invest Saint Lucia, Nadia Wells-Hyacinth, confirmed that at least one of the stalled tourism projects on Saint Lucia is already receiving some attention from foreign investors. “The interest that we’ve seen thus far has been in the non-traditional sectors of research, housing and renewable energy - what Dr. Fletcher in his presentation termed ‘transformational infrastructure,” she stated. Encouraged by the resultant enquiries, Invest Saint Lucia is projecting US $200 million in new and existing investment inflows over the next 2 years. This, according to CEO McHale Andrew, will determine the
When questioned about this apparent new approach to generating leads, the CEO explained that the staging of the Saint Lucia Investment Forum was just one of more targeted strategies being adopted by Invest Saint Lucia to attract sustainable investments. “We cannot guarantee that once we have this event, investments will flow,” he declared, “but what we can guarantee is that if we continue to do nothing we will get nothing. And if we continue to do things the way we traditionally did them, then we will get the same traditional results.” The second Saint Lucia Investment Forum is slated for 2016 at which greater focus will be given to non-traditional sectors in a bid to create employment and inject much needed foreign capital into the island’s economy. For more information on the 2014 Forum, please visit www.saintluciainvestmentforum.com
BusinessFocus BusinessFocus May May / / Jun Jun || 51 51
IN THE KNOW
Caribbean Finance Education Institute to be Established Financial Services School to Better Equip Regionâ€™s Offshore Centres
Minister Donville Innis A collapse of the Caribbean's International Financial Centres (IFCs) would also harm regional territories not centred on the offshore financial services business, says Donville Innis. The Barbadian Industry Minister made the declaration at a press conference in The Bahamas, to announce plans towards the establishment of a Caribbean Finance Education Institute aimed at strengthening human capital for the region's IFCs. The offshore financial services industry is critical to many small islands in the Caribbean, including Barbados, The Bahamas, Cayman Islands and Antigua, which attract hundreds of millions of US dollars each year through tax incentives. But the industry has been coming under increasing pressure recently as developed countries tighten regulations in an effort, they say, to clamp down on tax dodgers and money launderers who they believe try to hide their fortune in these so-called tax havens. "For the other islands that may not have financial services as an integral part of their economies at this time, the reality about it is, if (we) don't succeed, we can't buy other people's bananas, nor can we stay at their hotels and trade in the region will be jeopardised," said Innis at the press conference in Nassau, between sessions at the Third Caribbean Conference on the International Financial Services Sector. Jamaica's exports to Caricom, largely made up of food, fell by US$16 million to US$67 million in 2013, with Barbados the second largest purchaser of Jamaica's goods in the region, behind Trinidad & Tobago. The country's trade imbalance with its Caricom partners deteriorated a further US$56 million last year. BusinessFocus May / Jun
The University of the West Indies (UWI) and the Bahamas Institute of Financial Services are collaborating towards the establishment of the proposed Caribbean Centre of Excellence for Financial Services. "Based upon over three decades of experience in providing professional certification and expertise in the financial services sector, Bahamas Institute of Financial Services is eminently placed to provide the level of international credibility to the centreâ€™s offerings," said Ryan Pinder, the Financial Services Minster of The Bahamas. "This in conjunction with the internationally recognised brand of the UWI, places the region in an extremely advantageous position to strengthen and advocate on behalf of a sector so critical to the region's overall economic development," Pinder added. The Bahamian Finance Minister, who was unable to immediately provide a start date for the institute, noted that a planning committee will be set up to iron out the finer details. He said the vision is that the institution will offer tertiary and professional level training in order to ensure that the region has the skill set to meet demand in the financial services market. "As the (financial services) industries evolve, those who are working in the industries in our respective countries might have to fill certain gaps in their skill base to remain competitive and remain growing within the industries," said Pinder. But the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at UWI, Don Marshall, admitted that the increasing regulations factored heavily in the decision to embark on the project. "We have not paid enough attention as a University to producing sufficient knowledge that would assist in defending the sector, setting quality benchmarks and beginning to respond in a much more proactive way to the kinds of pressure that we face as we are asked to undertake a
treadmill of ever changing regulations," Marshall said. Marshall said all UWI Campuses will be involved in the programme, though the UWI Cave Hill Campus in Barbados will spearhead it. "Cave Hill Campus in particular is the point Campus. With the Mona and St Augustine Campuses, together with the online platforms, we are just about fit for purpose and ready to assist with research and teaching," he said. The European Union is expected to support the project. Mikael Barford, Ambassador to the EU for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, earlier at the conference said investing in people is one of four key strategies for growth in the financial services sector for Cariforum countries. He noted that the institute will enable Caribbean countries to capitalise on new market opportunities and expand their competitiveness in the financial services industry. "This is something that the EU views positively and is willing to support," he said, adding that the other key strategies for growth are regional integration, technology and innovation, and a focus on niche markets. The establishment of an international financial services centre has been a key growth plan of the Jamaican Government for many years. The project aims to transform Jamaica into a financial hub via incentives similar to the Cayman Islands and the other regional IFCs. However, much to the chagrin of local industry lobbyists, a regional expert suggested at the conference earlier this week that Jamaica is presently more suited to provide back-end support to the lucrative offshore financial services markets rather than any leading role. Hugo Inniss, Director at Barbados-based Kensington Finance, said the country's high crime rate and cost of doing business were prohibitive factors to setting up an IFC.
Hiring the Right Talent is Critical to Success By: Nashroon Mohammed, BA (Hons), Di LC, CCC, CLTMC Jim Collins, the author of Good to Great, said: “The most important decisions that business people make are not what decisions, but who decisions.” Who you hire in your organisation is by far the most important decision you can make, as they are the ones who make the decision of what to do. Recently, browsing through Amazon. com, I came across the book titled “Who: The A Method For Hiring” by Geoff Smart and Randy Street. The writings of this book stated that the single biggest problem in business today is unsuccessful hiring. The average hiring mistake costs a company $US1.5 million or more a year and countless wasted hours. This statistic becomes even more startling when you consider that the typical hiring success rate of managers is only 50 per cent. We are all too familiar with the traditional method of hiring—curriculum vitae, interview, and hire candidate. Over the years, we have seen that most organisations have added personality testing, aptitude and skills testing to their selection process. Ben Dattner, on September 12, 2013, wrote an article in HBR Blog Network entitled “How to Use Psychometric Testing in Hiring”. In this article, he outlined that roughly 18 per cent of companies are using personality testing as a means of choosing their people. According to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, this number is growing by ten to 15 per cent a year. Recruiting and selecting the right candidate to fill the position can be costly, and the costs can escalate when there is a high turnover of staff. Taking this into consideration, it will be prudent to hire people who will fit the position and the culture of your organisation. In this book, Geoff Smart and Randy Street outlined three reasons why hiring failure happens: 1. The business is unclear about what is needed in a job. 2. They have a weak flow of candidates to fill vacant positions. 3. The hiring officer does not trust their ability to pick out the right candidates.
To avoid these failures, Smart and Street who have spent over ten years doing research for their book, have proposed the “A method of hiring.” The A method is a simple process for identifying and hiring A players with a high degree of success; it helps organisations to get the “who” right.
The A method There are four simple steps to the A method. Scorecard—The scorecard is a document that describes exactly what you want a person to accomplish in a role. It is not a job description, but rather a set of outcomes and competencies that define a job done well. By defining performance for a role, the scorecard gives you a clear picture of what the person you seek needs to be able to accomplish. The scorecard describes the mission for the position, outcomes that must be accomplished, and the competencies that fit with both the culture of the company and the role. Source—Finding great people is getting harder, but it is not impossible. Systematic sourcing before you have slots to fill ensures you have high-quality candidates waiting when you need them. The number one method of sourcing candidates is by referrals from your personal and professional network. Select—Selecting talent in the A method involves a series of structured interviews that allow you to gather the relevant facts about a person so you can rate your scorecard and make an informed hiring decision. The screening interview is a short, phone-based interview designed to short-list only A players for the next step. • A top grading interview is the key interview in the selection process of the A method. This interview seeks to give confidence to the interviewing team because it uncovers the patterns of somebody’s career history, which can be matched to the scorecard. • The focused interview allows you to gather additional, specific information about the candidate. • The reference interview is where you
seek to confirm the information gathered thus far with someone who knows the candidate. Sell—Once you identify people you want on your team through selection, you need to persuade them to join. Selling the right way ensures you avoid the biggest pitfalls that cause the very people you want the most to take their talents elsewhere. It also protects you from the biggest heartbreak of all—losing the perfect candidate at the eleventh hour. Having briefly discussed the A method, let us look at what needs to happen to install this method within your organisation. • Make the people in your organisation your top priority. • Lead by example—follow the A method yourself. • Build support among your executive team or peers. • Cast a clear vision for the organisation and reinforce it through every communication with the broader team. • Train your team on best practices. • Remove barriers that impede success. • Implement new policies that support the change. • Recognise and reward those who use the method and achieve results. • Remove managers who are not on board. • Celebrate wins and plan for more change. Hiring and retaining talent is crucial to any organisation’s success and, therefore, calls for an approach that supports the traditional interview process. According to Zig Ziglar, “there’s no such thing as a successful business without a lot of successful people helping to grow it. You don’t build a business—you build people— and then people build the business.” About the Author: Nashroon Mohammed, BA (Hons), Di LC, CCC, CLTMC is a Business and Management Professional based in Trinidad. Shecan be contacted at Workplace Coach or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org BusinessFocus May / Jun |
IN IN THE THE KNOW KNOW
Deputy British High Commissioner Phil Culligan (left) with Eamon Kearney, Advisor on Proceeds of Crime, Britain. Deputy British High Commissioner Phil Culligan (left) with Eamon Kearney, Advisor on Proceeds of Crime, Britain. The two-day eighth annual regional Proceeds of Crime Conference was recently held with Caribbean countries being urged to strengthen measures aimed at curtailing the activities of criminals that could undermine national security. “This conference is important because serious and organized crime threatens national security by fueling violence, breeding insecurity, creating instability and weakening governance. “In doing so it poses a significant threat to prosperity, threatening economic growth by discouraging inward investment and creating barriers to business,” said Eamon Kearney, the Programme ManagerCaribbean Criminal Assets Recovery Programme (CCARP). The conference, funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) and hosted by Dominica’s Financial Intelligence Unit, is part of the DFID’s initiative that covers the seven independent countries of the Eastern Caribbean, along with Belize, Guyana, Jamaica and Montserrat. Kearney told delegates that criminals often fight harder to protect their assets from confiscation than they do to avoid going to jail. He said the conference is an opportunity for the Commonwealth Caribbean ‘to share best practice and discuss new and innovative ways of recovering assets from criminals.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
“Financial gain is very often the motive behind serious and organized crime. It is certainly our experience in the UK that criminals fight harder to protect their assets from confiscation than they do to avoid the prison sentence imposed for their crime. “Having in place a robust, asset recovery regime sends a very clear message to those engaged in serious organized crime that they will not profit from their criminality,” he added. Kearney said Dominica’s decision to amend legislation regarding the proceeds of crime, was a bold statement designed to challenge the criminal elements. “Dominica has already indicated that it is up for this fight by passing the amendments to the Proceeds of Crime Act in May of last year, which include full civil forfeiture powers, the first jurisdiction in the independent Eastern Caribbean (country) to do so…” He said that since the legislation was enacted last year, an estimated EC$362,000 (One EC dollar = US$0.37 cents) had been seized from criminals. “The government of Dominica should be commended for taking these bold steps. Taking assets of criminals provides the unique opportunity to reinvest this money in law enforcement, the criminal justice system and social programmes that help the victims of crime and those in society most affected by crime,” he said. Meanwhile, Attorney General, Levi Peter, who addressed the conference, said if the benefit of acquiring assets through crime is removed, there will be less incentive for individuals to commit crimes.
Caribbean Urged to Strengthen Measures to Deal with Proceeds of Crime “The Dominica approach has been to do all that we can from a government perspective to holster the tools to fight this criminal activity by enhancing the legislation to support those engaged in law enforcement,” he said. Peter indicated that when an asset is seized from criminals, it is deposited into the Assets Forfeiture Fund to be reinvested into the economy. He encouraged participants of the conference to recognize the importance of the work that they do. “The work that you do underpins the stability of our various jurisdictions and ultimately our region and it may be said that it filters in on the stability of the international financial system as a whole,” he said. “If we as individual jurisdictions do not have a substantive and robust financial system that is considered and recognized to be of integrity then the results will be that the quality of life for our various inhabitants will be greatly diminished.” The main purpose of CCARP is to help build the capacity and capability of law enforcement agencies, financial intelligence units (FIUs), public prosecutors and the judiciary by enhancing their efforts in countering serious organised crime, particularly drug trafficking. To date, countries participating in the CCARP have removed EC$8.6 million (One EC dollar = US$0,37 cents) and frozen more than EC$38.7 million from criminal organisations across the region excluding Jamaica.
Cuba Approves Foreign Investment Law
CUBA'S National Assembly has unanimously approved a bill aimed at making the Communist-run island more attractive to foreign investors. The law slashes taxes on profits from 30 per cent to 15 per cent and gives new investors eight years of exemption from paying taxes. The change is seen as a key part of President Raul Castro's reform package, aiming to modernise Cuba's economy. The government in Havana opened the island to foreign capital in 1995. But in recent years, Cuba has seen a fall in foreign investment and moderate economic growth. The economy grew by 2.7% in 2013, well below the government's 7 per cent target. Cuba's economy is seen as highly centralised and inefficient, but almost 500,000 Cubans now have licences to operate small, private businesses. Presenting the law at a special televised session of the assembly, ministers were at pains to stress that the government was not "selling" the country but taking steps to ensure its prosperity as a socialist state, the BBC's Sarah Rainsford reports from Havana. The text of the bill has not yet been released but is expected to introduce several incentives to investment when it comes into force in three months' time: * Investors will be lured into joint ventures with the state and Cuban companies. * The process of approving foreign investment will be speeded up. * Legal protection will aim to reinforce investors' confidence in the Communist government * Taxes will be cut to 15 per cent on profits in most areas, although special conditions will be set for investment in natural resources * Tax on nickel and fossil fuel investment could be as high as 50 per cent. The reform is not expected to attract investment from the large Cuban community in the US, under the 50 year-old US economic embargo. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
IN THE KNOW
Barbadian Entrepreneurs to Benefit from Angel Investor Network Small and medium size businesses employ over 90% of the workforce internationally and the same holds true for Barbados. Indeed, most governments and industry leaders believe that start up companies will play a significant role in turning the current global economic crisis around. To this end, the Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation (BEF), in pursuit of its goal to make Barbados the #1 Hub for Entrepreneurship in the world by 2020, spent 2013 continuing its work of advocating and facilitating an entrepreneurship culture and ecosystem in Barbados. In early 2014 BEF engaged an international expert to assist in establishing a Barbados based Angel Investor Network. The preliminary work has been completed and based on the recommendations received and subsequent engagement with stakeholders, BEF is moving forward immediately with the creation of ‘Trident Angels’ the first ever Caribbean Angel Investor Network. Early meetings with potential angels and enthusiastic entrepreneurs were heartening, informative and will guide the next steps. Angel Investing is high risk but a critical source of finance for Start-up enterprises. It is very exciting to see many local start-ups getting qualified and identified as ready for angel investing and to have a large group of local Angel Investors willing to participate in this opportunity to grow high potential Barbadian enterprises. BusinessFocus May / Jun
The plans to forge ahead are timely given the urgent need for economic growth and employment generation and the recognition by Governments and Business Leaders worldwide that Entrepreneurship is a major driver of economic and social transformation. Entrepreneurship is now at the top of the National Economic Transformation Agenda. Business Facilitation has been identified as key to investment generation and job creation and to enabling high growth potential entrepreneurs. Several members of the BEF’s board are new, having been elected over the last few months. Board Chairman Peter Boos, is pleased with the team, “these new members of the Board are all passionate leaders in their own right and bring new ideas and energy to the Board. We are all committed to work together to help Barbados realize its full potential as a world class entrepreneurship hub for both domestic and international investors. Helping identify and grow indigenous business with global marketplace potential is our focus. Engaging and partnering with international investors will be important to help facilitate that dream of creating a very competitive and innovative economy” Mr.Boos confirmed that BEF is working on several other innovative initiatives to transform the Barbados entrepreneurship ecosystem.
What is an Angel Investor Network? At its core an angel investor network is a group of successful entrepreneurs and other wealthy individuals who want to invest in startup or early stage ventures which have serious potential to create value. These persons also know that success of these projects depends not just on access to money but also on mentorship. Mentoring reduces the risk of failure due to inexperience and lack of business skills. The investors themselves are therefore committed to mentoring the entrepreneurs whom they choose to finance. As a result the angel network produces a powerful combination of funding and ready access to high quality mentoring. An added virtue is that the group of investors can leverage their collective experience and skills so as to very effectively assess a venture’s potential and its risks, early on; and this in turn allows the angels to identify which start ups will benefit most from their capital and advice and which ones should be referred back to the entrepreneurs for further work before they can become viable prospects. Angel investor networks are therefore key components of a proentrepreneurship ecosystem, geared towards the development of sustainable enterprises and a buoyant economy.
OECS Appoints New Ambassador to the European Union
New Envoy Calls for Bold Moves
Dr Len Ishmael The new ambassador for the Eastern Caribbean States to the European Union has urged the ACP Group to make ambitious and innovative moves to reshape the organisation, in order to ensure its relevance in a multi-polar world. In her first address to the Committee of Ambassadors since her appointment recently, Dr Len Ishmael laid out the context of a “world in flux”, and offered lessons from her decade-long turn at the helm of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) on exploiting current global shifts to strengthen the institution. “Times of fluidity and change can also mean opportunities. But seizing these requires doing away with stale debates and dogma which were right for a different time and place. Bold ideas, innovative thinking and new vision are required today,” she said. Ishmael pointed to the mutating roles of the so-called First and Third World, accentuated by the global financial crisis, and the broad scope of action needed to tackle development challenges in an interconnected world.
“Today we witness intensified international cooperation unmatched since the efforts of the post Second World War in designing a global governance order through specific programmes and institutions, except that today, the actors are more numerous, asymmetric and cooperation spans the globe. “Different actors are playing new roles on the geopolitical main stage and southsouth and more recently, south-south and triangular cooperation are rapidly becoming the vital ‘new normal’ of the development agenda,” she told fellow ambassadors. As the former Director General of the OECS and former Director of the regional headquarters of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Ishmael shared how the region responded to volatile conditions by forging new partnerships and managing regional integration. The OECS includes nine member states with a combined population of around 600 000. Ishmael oversaw the launch of the OECS Economic Union (2011) and OECS Assembly (2012) as vital elements in the
OECS model of integration, which entails setting up an array of regional institutional architecture to provide services such as joint foreign service, security and law and order. “This is the home-grown model that we have designed and refined over the last three decades in a bid to decrease our vulnerabilities and increase our resilience as micro-states, as one group,” she said. As the newest Ambassador in the Brussels-based ACP family, she gave a special greeting to Pacific ACP members, who are fellow participants of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) group. She replaced Shirley Skerritt-Andrew who completed her tour of duty last year. In addition to her leadership roles in OECS and ECLAC, Ishmael was previously also Director of Lead International (Rockefeller Foundation), an Associate Professor at the University of West Indies, and an International Consultant in Development Planning. She holds a PhD in Development Planning and Economics and is widely published on development issues, especially in relation to SIDS. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
IN THE KNOW
Art Williams & Harry Wendt Aeronautical Engineering School signs MOU with University of Trinidad & Tobago
The University of Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana’s Art Williams & Harry Wendt Aeronautical Engineering School signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) establishing substantial cooperation aimed at the two schools pursuing a “mutually beneficial educational and research relationship for the development and growth of the local and regional aviation sector”. The MOU agreed “to promote advancement in the quality of aviation education and competency development delivered to students through collaborative activities, learning and exchanges among faculty, students and staff, the sharing
of equipment and laboratory facilities and the development of a framework for articulation between the Programmes of the respective parties”. The two organisations agreed to promote mutually beneficial activities in the areas of human resource development in the aviation sector and to work together towards the globalization of higher education. The MOU commits the UTT and the AW&HWAES “to the establishment of various types of cooperative programmes; student and/or faculty exchange, joint programme development, joint marketing and promotion in the Caribbean,
curriculum design, joint research, and any other activity deemed to be beneficial to both institutions”. UTT and the Engineering School headquartered at Guyana’s Ogle Airport and owned and operated by the Aircraft Owners Association of Guyana (AOAG), will enter into separate agreements to establish the delivery of training with MOUs signed for each programme to be offered. The UTT plans to start training for the Ab-Initio Programme offered by the Engineering School in September 2014 in Trinidad & Tobago.
Trinidad & Tobago Aviation Institute to Open in September 2014 One of the eight Sikorsky S-76 helicopters that operate in T&T. With the recent signing of a collaboration agreement with US-based Sikorsky Aircraft Corportation, T&T has moved one step closer to becoming a regional leader in the aviation industry. Sikorsky, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp, announced the signing during the International Air and Space Fair (FIDAE) in Santiago, Chile, according to a release from industry site Helihub. Sikorsky provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries worldwide. Under the agreement, Sikorsky’s participation may include providing expertise in maintenance training and technical know-how, including “train-thetrainer” proficiency, as well as exploring future partnerships with operators for student internships and on-the-job training. BusinessFocus May / Jun
T&T Being Positioned as Regional Aviation Hub
“A centre of excellence in the entire Caribbean and Latin America, the Trinidad and Tobago Aviation Institute will offer our students, and those throughout the region, an opportunity to fulfill their aspirations for a career in aviation. Our vision is to make Trinidad and Tobago the regional hub of Aviation,” said Fazal Karim, Minister of Tertiary Education and Skills Training. On March 10, Karim’s ministry celebrated the start of construction for the country’s first aviation institute, which is scheduled to open in September. According to Helihub, eight Sikorsky S-76 rotorcraft currently operate in T&T, with plans for expansion in the near future. This includes Sikorsky’s newest commercial helicopter, the S-76D aircraft. T&T’s National Helicopter Services Ltd. (NHSL) flew the first-ever revenue service flight for this type of aircraft in February.
NHSL, formerly the Air Division (Helicopter Unit) of the Ministry of National Security, is a joint venture between the T&T government and the National Gas Company. Adam Schierholz, Sikorsky Deputy Regional Executive for Latin America, said: “Sikorsky is proud to have been a part of Trinidad and Tobago’s helicopter operations for more than 30 years. We have a tremendous partner in National Helicopter Services, and we are extremely pleased to be able to further explore with them this exciting new chapter in the country’s continued development of its aviation industry. This Institute will provide expert training of technical personnel in the areas of maintenance and engineering, and Sikorsky is eager to discuss the potential opportunities for support.”
GAMA Learning Institute
Barbados Airport to Benefit from CDB Facilities Study Loan
Training you today for Tomorrows Opportunities
GAMA Learning Institute is a premier provider of specialised Business and Managerial Training in St Lucia. We provide a wide range of courses in:
Certified Business Professional Executive Certificate Project Management Certificate In Marketing PMP (Project Management Professional) IAB (International Book Keepers Association) Accounting Lv. 1-4 ISO Courses (International Organization of Standardization) Online Courses P.O. Box MF 7150 Castries, Saint Lucia Tel: (758)-453-7719 Fax: (758)-452-4099 email@example.com
Grantley Adams International Airport WITH the approval of a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the Government of Barbados will be exploring ways to improve cargo facilites at the Grantley Adams International Airport. The loan of US$357,200, was approved by the Board of Directors of the CDB to the Government of Barbados for the study, which will be undertaken by Grantley Adams International Airport Incorporated (GAIA Inc), operators of GAIA. The study will be conducted to assess the current and future needs and the type of infrastructure that will create a world-class facility. The study will also focus on several areas, including security considerations to applicable international standards for both operations and physical infrastructure, developing and presenting physical development options and a gap analysis of existing operations and physical infrastructure. "Investments in improved logistics and supply chain management can help maximise opportunities that exist for improvement in the productivity of the transportation system. Trade logistics in Barbados require institutional reform and investment in infrastructure in order to improve efficiency in the processing of goods and services in trade. The development of modern air cargo facilitation will be critical in achieving this goal," said CDB's Vice-President, Operations, Dr Carla Barnett.
An Internet Hotspot in Castries to Relax and Drink with Friends 37 Jeremie Street, Castries, Saint Lucia Tel: 1(758) 458-1540
What to Expect at Kâ€™s Lounge Local & International Cocktails Live TV - For Sports & News Updates Friendly & Efficient Service St. Lucian & International Beers & Ciders
Spacious Bars Local Entertainment Fast, Freshly Prepared Food FREE WiFi
Offering Mouth Watering Evening Cocktails Found NO Where Else In Town
ENJOY our Happy Hours from 5pm-7pm Daily
firstname.lastname@example.org facebook.com/kslounge BusinessFocus May / Jun |
INAUGURAL REGIONAL CONFERFENCE ON MANUFACTURING St. Lucia Manufacturer’s Association (SMA) hosted the Inaugural Regional Conference on Manufacturing in partnership with Invest Saint Lucia Ltd., at the SMA Secretariat on Bridge Street, Castries on Friday, March 7th, 2014. The theme for the event was “DEVELOPING SYNERGIES WITH OTHER SECTORS AND THINKING REGIONAL TO FACE ECONOMIC CHALLENGES. The Conference was part of the Association’s Quality Awards Programme which culminated in a Gala Event at Sandals Halcyon on Saturday, March 8th, 2014 where awards were handed out for Excellence in Manufacturing. The objectives of the meeting were: • To define a futuristic vision for manufacturing in the Region • To outline the common challenges individual countries face in the sector • To examine ways in which manufacturers can work together to develop the sector regionally • To develop strategic partnerships that can be forged to create niche markets for various manufacturing outfits both within the region and outside • To address common concerns affecting various Manufacturer’s Associations Remarks were delivered by the Honorable Emma Hippolyte, Minister of Commerce, Business Development, Investment and Consumer Affairs highlighting the need for manufacturers to be cognizant of maintaining a competitive edge in their businesses. She reiterated the need for them to be aware of adherence of International Standards and best practices in manufacturing; in the production of goods and services for sustainability in the industry. She emphasized the need to increase volumes of export so as to achieve economies of scale. Minister Hippolyte reaffirmed the role of organizations like Trade and Export Promotional Agency (TEPA) and other similar bodies in the region who had as their mandate to assistance firms in developing their export capacity. Minister Hippolyte confirmed her commitment to continue holding quarterly meetings with the SMA to iron out matters affecting the smooth running of their operations. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Attending the Regional Manufacturer’s meeting were Presidents and Representatives of the Manufacturing Sectors of Jamaica (Mr. Brian Pengelley, President JMA), Trinidad Mr. Ramesh Ramdeen, CEO, Trinidad Manufacturer’s Association (TTMA) Grenada (Mr. Denis Noel of Noelville); Dominica (Mr. Jean Yves Bonnaire, President of Dominica Manufacturer’s Association (DMA)) and Martinique (President of the Martinique Manufacturer’s Association). Each representative gave an overview of the challenges facing their respective territories. Participants expressed some common concerns, a major one being the lack of a viable Transportation system for intra-regional trade. There was also the issue that most of the cargo travelling to the region had to be transshipped through a US port thereby inflating the cost of production. Issues of cross-border trade restrictions, non-tariff barriers and bureaucratic red tape were also high up on the agenda as impediments to trade. Participants expressed their concerns on trade agreements which had been signed by their various governments, yet in some cases companies were not aware of the terms and conditions of these agreements and help was needed in advising manufacturers on how to interpret
and best use these agreements to their advantage. They also highlighted the need for the relevant authorities to improve the monitoring of CSME and to provide the regional manufacturing sector with a periodical status update on the proposed Caricom - Canada Trade and Development Agreement which is anticipated to have a drastic impact on trade in the region. President of the Jamaica Manufacturerâ€™s Association (JMA), Brian Pengelley who was the guest speaker at the Second Biennial St. Lucia Manufacturerâ€™s Association Quality Awards Ceremony held at Sandals called on local manufacturers to create greater linkages among themselves in order to survive the crippling effects
of globalization. Pengelley said that the Caribbean region stood to benefit if manufacturers spent as little foreign exchange as possible on the international market to procure goods and services needed to run their operations, if these goods and services could be sourced within the region. He added that regional manufacturers also needed to capitalize on the many opportunities that could lead to developing services that support the manufacturing sectors regionally. He identified logistics, distribution, finance, technology, and market promotion, as some of the areas where opportunities presently exists and that more could be created. He also referred to the Caribbeanâ€™s logistical positioning within major shipping routes and the expansion of the Panama Canal as a doorway for the opening up of trading opportunities. Presentation were made on Developing Synergies between the manufacturing and tourism sectors delivered by Mr. Noorani Azeeze, Executive Director of St. Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association, AgroManufacturing and Agriculture presented by Mrs. Rufina Paul; Opportunities for Investment in Smart Manufacturing Niches by Mrs. Nadia Wells-Hyacinth of Invest St. Lucia and Developing policies for the
manufacturing sector in the complex fiscal and economic environment by Mr. Michael Savarin of Invest Dominica; Reforming the regional VAT regimes to facilitate the survival of light manufacturing in the Caribbean by Dr. Claudius Preville and Threats and opportunities attached to the regional economic integration process at the OECS and CARICOM levels by Dr. Thomas Samuel. Much discussion among participants ensured regarding opportunities for manufacturing investments in Food Processing, Light engineering, Furniture, Garments, Arts and Crafts, Chemicals, Tourism services, Data Processing and Informatics. Notably, participants were encouraged to observe the key considerations for success as being a commitment to focusing on excellence in quality, effective pricing and developing good relationships with suppliers. The meeting ended with a decision that a petition be sent from the Regional Manufacturers to Council of Trade and Development (COTED) highlighting suggestions for the creation of an enabling environment for the sector.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
The Highly Awarded Harris Paints St. Lucia Team Celebrates
SMA Hosts 2nd Quality Awards Harris Paints Celebrates
Marguerite Desir of Harris Paints Receiving Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence BusinessFocus May / Jun
The St. Lucia Manufacturers Association (SMA) held its second biennial Quality Awards ceremony at the Sandals Halcyon Hotel recognizing excellence across several areas in the manufacturing sector. In attendance were the Prime Minister Hon Dr Kenny D Anthony, Ministers of Government, other private sector leaders and the members of the manufacturing sector and business community. President of the SMA, Paula Calderon, in her welcome and opening remarks highlighted the outstanding efforts and achievements of the competing companies and challenged the authorities at addressing the many issues to help the growth and development of the manufacturing sector. The feature address was presented by Brian Pengelley, President of the Jamaica Manufacturers Association, who highlighted the importance and benefits of regional integration and linkages with the various sectors. He also noted that the biggest opportunity was to forge partnerships to supply the many lucrative government contracts who are the largest procurers of goods and services. Harris Paints delivered a dominant performance reaping a total of seven prestigious awards which included the top prize for the evening – the Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence – which was presented to Harris Paints by Prime Minister, the Right Honorable Dr. Kenny Anthony and the President of The St Lucia Manufacturers Association Mrs. Calderon for the highest level of Excellence among manufacturers in St. Lucia. This included five Diamond Awards as well as first place in a new category – the Lawson Calderon Award for Eco Manufacturing.
The Team of Du Boulay's Bottling Company Ltd.
Harris Paints was the only company to achieve Diamond award in all the categories. Mrs. Paula Calderon, the President of the SMA, confirmed that the awards were achieving their goal of raising the quality standard of the manufacturers in St. Lucia, explaining that all those who had entered again this year had increased their points system and realised overall improvements. She lauded them for their investment in the economy. There were three divisions within each category of Awards; Gold, Platinum and Diamond with the Winners in the various Categories being as follows: Product and Customer Service Awards: Gold : Star Publishing Company, Paradise Water, Poyotte’s Joinery Inc and Top Stone Fabrication Ltd. Platinum : Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd, Sunfresh Ltd, and Natmed Ltd. Diamond : Winera, Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd, Baron Foods Ltd and Caribbean Awning Production Company Ltd. Human Resource Development Awards :
The Baron Foods Team
Gold : Sunfresh Ltd and Natmed Ltd Platinum : Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd, Winera, Paradise Water and Baron Foods Ltd. Diamond: Harris Paints ( St Lucia ) Ltd, Caribbean Awning Production, St Lucia Distillers Ltd and Windward & Leeward Brewery Ltd. Implementation of Standards and Best Practices Awards : Gold: Poyotte’s Joinery and Top Stone Fabrication. Platinum: Sunfresh Ltd and Natmed Ltd.
The Team of Top Stone Fabrication
Diamond : Paradise Water, Winera, Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd, Caribbean Awning Production, Baron Foods Ltd and Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd. Corporate Social Responsibility Awards: Gold : Winera Platinum : Paradise Water and Caribbean Awning Production Diamond : Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd, Baron Foods Ltd, St Lucia Distillers Ltd, Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd, and Windward & Leeward Brewery Ltd. Leadership Awards.
The Team of WinFresh Gold : Natmed Ltd. Platinum : Winera
Diamond : Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd, Baron Foods Ltd, Caribbean Awning Production, St Lucia Distillers Ltd , Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd, Paradise Water and Windward & Leeward Brewery Ltd.
The Team of St. Lucia Distillers
BusinessFocus May / Jun | 63
The WINERA Team
ECO Manufacturing Award : First Place: Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd. Second Place: Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd Third Place: Caribbean Awning Production.
The Natmed Team
Minister’s Award for Innovation was won by Du Boulay’s Bottling Co Ltd and presented by Minister of Commerce, Emma Hippolyte, who commended the nominees for maintaining their forward-thinking standards. In honour of International Women’s Day, Calderon presented plaques of appreciation to noted businesswomen in the Saint Lucian Community who have showed continued dedication to their craft. The recipients were Margaret Monplaisir, Marguerite Desir, Mae Wayne, Mkabi Walcott, Renee DeMyers, Paula James, Pauline Gomez, and Vanessa Lionel. But the ladies flipped the script on Calderon as Paula James presented her with an award for her own commitment to business.
The WINLEE Brewery Team
Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence – was won by Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd and was presented to Ms Marguerite Desir of Harris Paints (St Lucia) Ltd by Prime Minster Dr Kenny Anthony.
Caribbean Awnings Team
BusinessFocus May / Jun
Paradise Water Team
Winners of the 2014 SMA Quality Awards. Seven awards, including three Diamond Awards and the Minister’s Award for Innovation.
Bottlers of your Favourite Drinks.
Du Boulay's Bottling Company Ltd. P.O. Box 962, Bridge Street, Castries, St. Lucia, W.I. Tel: 1 (758) 452-2870/2280 • Fax: 1 (758) 452-3125 BusinessFocus May / Jun | 65 email: email@example.com • web: www.duboulaysbottling.com
Tenderoni Transforms and
Tenderoni Foods Inc, the Eastern Caribbean’s leading producer of pasta products and convenience foods, recently announced the culmination of its capacity expansion and strategic repositioning. With its acquisition of the production assets of a once-dominant regional producer and the commissioning of a second plant in the north, Tenderoni is well-poised to penetrate its domestic and regional markets. According to Company Chairman, Rudy Gurley, “We doubled capacity last year and the logical next step was a product rebranding and repositioning exercise to give life to the New Tenderoni. Shoppers have already began to see new, aesthetically appealing and appropriately re-sized packaging with lower price points, and this will continue.” Managing Director, Susanna Gurley said Tenderoni’s new logo reflects the fresh,
BusinessFocus May / Jun
forward-looking company that Tenderoni is today. “Our new visual identity better depicts the new Tenderoni — healthy, delicious, and contemporary — while retaining the essence of the brand, its warmth and our passion for pasta.” The company’s tagline “Quality & Taste” embodies Tenderoni’s vision to become the first choice among consumers, providing products of unsurpassed nutritional value, quality and taste and at affordable prices. Key to the embodiment of the slogan is Tenderoni’s commitment to using 100% Durum Semolina in its pasta. A special yellow-coloured grain, Durum Semolina is universally recognized as the most noble of wheat products given its excellent dietetic and gastronomic qualities. New product launches are in the works. Lasagna was recently launched and Tenderoni’s long awaited long macaroni will soon come on stream.
SMA Elects New Executive Ronald Ramjattan Elected President
The St. Lucia Manufacturer’s Association (SMA) held its 12th Annual General Meeting on Thursday 24th April, 2014 at the Bay Gardens Hotel and the following members were elected to serve for the next two years:
MR. RONALD RAMJATTAN BARON FOODS LTD.
1ST VICE PRESIDENT
MRS. MARGARET MONPLAISIR ST. LUCIA DISTILLERS LTD.
2ND VICE PRESIDENT
MR. RICHARD DU BOULAY DUBOULAY'S BOTTLING CO. LTD
MRS. RENEE DE MYERS SUNFRESH / WINFRESH LTD.
TREASURER MR. THOMAS LEONCE WINDWARD & LEEWARD BREWERY LTD. ASSISTANT SECRETARY MISS MALISTA LIONEL POYOTTE'S JOINERY INC.
PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER MRS. FRANKA DeFREITAS NATMED LTD.
IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT
MRS. PAULA CALDERON CARIBBEAN AWNINGS PRODUCTION LTD. The President and members thanked the outgoing president for all her hard work and dedication given to the Association. The new Executive has pledged to continue working in the interest of its members, Government and other Agencies, whilst addressing the challenges of the economy. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Metal & Plastic Manufacturers Ltd.
By: Ramia Thomas
Building on 35 Years of Quality Products and Service For 35 years Saint Lu Metal and Plastic Manufacturers Limited have provided the people of St. Lucia with excellent customer service and quality products at affordable prices. From its manufacturing plant in Vieux Fort the company started with a small team specializing in the production of Aluminium Windows and Doors for the construction industry. Customers came to the company’s plant in Vieux Fort to purchase their products. With the growth in demand for its products the company expanded operations to increase production. Recognising that many of its customers were coming from the Castries area and the north of the island the company then invested in setting up a Showroom and Sales Office at Vide Bouteille, Castries to satisfy the market. Over the years the company became well known island wide as the leading Manufacturer and Supplier of quality custom and standard size Aluminium Windows and Doors. By this time it had also continued to expand its product line to now include Screen Doors and Frameless Shower Doors to Shop Fronts and Security Bars. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Saint Lu Metal and Plastic Manufacturers Limited employ a staff of 70 persons today who are all knowledgeable in the products that they manufacture and sell and are able to guide their customers in making the most suitable purchase for their specific purpose. Saint Lu employees are highly trained and are able to perfectly install all of their customers’ purchases and service all that they manufacture. Saint Lu’s product line has since been further expanded recently to include a new factory established in Vieux Fort specialising in the manufacture of a range of Hard Wooden Doors and related products. To further enhance the customer experience and improve its Showroom Display and increase its sales offerings the company recently acquired and refurbished a building at Mongiraud on the Gros Islet Highway which now houses all of its Castries Sales Operations. This location is now open for business and all of the company’s products are available onsite. Saint Lu Metal and Plastic Manufacturers Limited is also a good corporate citizen and is the proud sponsor of the Vieux
Fort Comprehensive School’s annual Math Competition at Campus B. The company annually also makes contributions to the Marian Home, Graduation Trophies for Augier Combined and Vieux-Fort Technical, Campus B. Recently Saint Lu Metal and Plastic Manufacturers Limited donated windows and doors to a family in Choiseul who lost their home to a fire and also presented a new laptop to Pierrot Combined School.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
LAUNCHES IN-FIRM DESIGN AND BRANDING PROJECT The Caribbean Export Developmental Agency (Caribbean Export) has launched an InFirm Design and Branding initiative that will provide participating CARIFORUM state firms with technical support and financial assistance for the strengthening of their packaging design and product branding. The In-firm Design and Branding Project is the second phase of the Agency’s Brand Development initiative, the first of which was the successful hosting of a Brand Development and Packaging Workshop/Webinar in July 2013. The Brand Development and Packaging Workshop was developed to address the specific limitations which regional firms face in branding and preparing their products’ packaging for export and to educate them in the required standards for packaging for export to the European Union. This In-firm Design and Branding Project will take a more practical approach, providing a unique opportunity for regional firms to receive technical assistance in the formulation of effective branding specific to their businesses from the internationally recognised UK based design firm Brand 42. Eight CARIFORUM firms were successful in meeting the criteria to participate in this initiative including; Viking Traders Limited and Baron Foods Limited from St. Lucia; Patwa Apparel, Spring Vale Enterprises and Southside Distributors Limited from Jamaica; Vincyfresh, Tan Bun Skrati and Armstrong Manufacturing Limited from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Barbados respectively. Brand 42 will be a technical partner in this project, providing customized consultations and guidance to each of the companies involved and is scheduled to begin its initial consultations at the beginning of April with the proceedings lasting for six months thereafter. Mrs. Pamela coke Hamilton, Executive Director of Caribbean Export, commented: “This is another proactive and invaluable offering from the Agency. Our regional firms stand to gain immensely from this project not only in terms of the improvement to their branding and packaging, which is crucial, but also in their knowledge of international standards and procedures, which will benefit their operations across the board.” About Caribbean Export Caribbean Export is a regional export development and trade and investment promotion organisation of the Forum of Caribbean States (CARIFORUM) currently executing the Regional Private Sector Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) Caribbean Export’s mission is to increase the competitiveness of Caribbean countries BusinessFocus May / Jun
by providing quality export development and trade and investment promotion services through effective programme execution and strategic alliances. More information about Caribbean Export can be found at www.caribexport.com. Contact: JoEllen Laryea, PR and Communications, Caribbean Export Development Agency, Tel: +1(246) 4360578, Fax: +1(246) 436-9999, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
YOUTH IN FOCUS
Two Young Saint Lucians Chase the Dream on the Red Carpet Serenity lives around virtuous energy. 1. D O N ’ T B R I N G M E D O W N F T . L I S A S C I N T A 2 . S . L . A . V. E F T . Q U A K E M A T T H E W S & K I R S T E N O L I V I A 3. RICH ALREADY 4. ANYBODY OUT THERE 5. JADED 6 . T R A N S I T I O N F T . C A M S M I T H 7. W H A T Y O U W A N T 8. SONG FOR NICOLE 9. APOLOGY ACCEPTED
Making Waves Across the Music World in Canada DOWNLOAD THE EASCAPE MOVEMENT MIXTAPE HERE
By: Ramia Thomas Johann Deterville a.k.a ‘Yogi’ realized what he wanted to do from an early age. He started his musical journey at the age of 15. Through his determination, he worked towards building his first recording studio while working at ACCELA Marketing as an audio engineer at the age of 21. Two years later he was able to save enough money to move to Halifax, Canada to study. There Yogi teamed up with singer and songwriter Filbert Guevarra Salton a.k.a Kayo. A young talented St. Lucian as himself he had previous met whilst in Jamaica, who at the time was attempting to make a name for himself. Yogi was instantly drawn to Kayo’s ambition and the two immediately became friends. Together they have continued to soar to higher musical heights in their individual careers. “It has been an amazing journey and a great learning experience for me. Kayo and I have figured out a formula that works well for us. It’s always collaborative, and we highly respect each other's opinions. We initially started working together in 2010, while I was in Jamaica. From there we were able to build an excellent working relationship,” reflected Yogi. Yogi’s productions and Kayo’s songs have now become widely popular and can be found on the shelves of music lovers all across Canada, especially their adopted hometown, Halifax. One of the duo’s most recent achievements was being among the selected opening acts to perform at the East Coast Music Awards (ECMA) Gala earlier this year. It was also a very proud
occasion for the two young Saint Lucian talents whose project S.L.A.V.E (Serenity Lives Around Virtuous Energy), got nominated for best hip-hop album. “The event was nationally televised and the experience was kind of surreal. Being on the red carpet I felt like a celebrity for just a minute, with all the lights flashing at us. Overall it was a great time to network and enjoy some good music. I worked on the S.L.A.V.E project non-stop and I think it’s my best body of work to date. We did a lot of collaborations with other producers like Cam Smith, Chris Noxx, Corey LeRue, Young K and Ritchcraft, all very talented individuals,” spoke Yogi of the album and his experience at the Gala. Yogi and Kayo have toured mostly in Canada and have been successful in building a strong business network with other professionals in the industry. Touring also made the musical group they developed along the way more unified. Yogi is in the process of starting up his own production house. He hopes that in time he will be able to return home to conduct a two week workshop to impart some of the knowledge he has acquired from his experience abroad and to instil some of the musical values his mother, one of St. Lucia’s former cultural icons, had passed on to him. “I would like to teach young kids about producing. I think that there are many kids who may not necessarily want to play any instrument or write music. Although if given a chance to record instruments or edit recording sessions they might be really
good at it. Kids are very much more into technology a lot these days,” expressed Yogi, of his future plans. Yogi eulogized Kayo his friend, for being the driving force behind his will to constantly improve in his career. Yogi said that he was grateful to Kayo for giving him the opportunity to tour Canada and meet new artists and other producers he now works with. “Kayo has opened up a lot of doors for me. I realize also that Kayo's constant growth inspires me to work harder,” Yogi added. Through his career Yogi has met artists like: Classified, Romain Virgo, Jah Cure, Vybz Kartel, Xzibit, Chali2na, Protoje, Beenieman, Snoop Dogg, Esperanza Spalding and many more. He hopes to someday work with Timberland, Nas, Damian Marley and Kanye West. Yogi expressed that never in his wildest dreams would he have expected that from making beats in his room using inexpensive computer speakers, would today bring him to this point. “Living on a small island, there isn't much you could hope for. I’m in a place where I can grow and learn more about the music industry. I am still not where I want to be, but I’m working on that. My advice to young people today is chase your dreams, make mistakes, be patient, be humble and always keep positive people around you,” Yogi shared. Yogi and Kayo have now moved to Toronto to continue chasing the dream. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Sustainable Energy Solutions Could Save the Caribbean US$200M By Jun Zhang
Jun Zhang IFC’s Senior Manager for the Caribbean High energy costs are the Achilles heel of the Caribbean. More than 97 per cent of this region’s electricity is generated from fossil fuels and many islands devote a hefty portion of their GDP to fuel imports. On some Caribbean islands, electricity bills can soar up to six times higher than in the United States, which creates a burden for many local businesses. At the same time, these islands are vulnerable to the environmental impacts associated with fossil fuels, including air pollution, rising sea levels, and coral bleaching. Reducing the reliance on fossil fuels and supporting cleaner, more efficient energy production is critical to helping island economies grow sustainably. But many companies face hurdles in accessing credit to invest in clean energy. That’s where the banking sector can play an important role. The International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group and the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector, is developing a regional programme to help local financial institutions provide the BusinessFocus May / Jun
credit needed for companies to adopt more energy efficient practices and utilise cleaner energy sources. This in turn can help reduce costs – and environmental footprints – for Caribbean hotels and other businesses. At a seminar in Kingston, Jamaica recently IFC presented a market analysis of sustainable energy finance opportunities in Barbados, Belize, Jamaica, Grenada, and St Lucia. It found that energy demands in the Caribbean are expected to double by 2027. Continued dependence on fossil fuels is likely to exacerbate pollution and other environmental impacts, while diverting significant resources from these economies. But there are upsides as well. According to the analysis, incorporating energy efficiency measures across these five countries over the next few years could save approximately US$200 million. For example, solar water heaters offer a ready solution to water heating in the Caribbean. Barbados has already installed more than 50,000 solar water heaters, saving the country some US$6.5 million a year on oil imports. Caribbean countries could also benefit from water efficiency measures. Right now, anywhere from 25 to 65 per cent of clean water is lost in inefficient water distribution systems, which also results in lost energy due to unnecessary pumping. Some entrepreneurs say the tide is beginning to turn, but the financial sector needs to catch up. “Businesses are already starting to shift to more energy efficient technologies,” said Andre Escalante, founder of Energy Dynamics, a Trinidad-based company that helps hotels and other businesses adopt new energy-saving technologies. “However, financial institutions in the region are still reluctant to provide credits to implement new technologies that they may not be familiar with.”
IFC intends to close this knowledge gap by advising local financial institutions to help them meet the financing needs of sustainable energy projects. IFC also plans to work with energy service companies and equipment vendors to help them understand how to best structure projects for financing. In the Dominican Republic, IFC helped Banco BHD become the first financial institution in the country to offer a credit line to finance sustainable energy projects. Over two years, BHD provided US$24 million in financing for projects that are bringing more cost-efficient energy solutions to the Dominican Republic, from natural gas conversion to solar energy. “We’ve seen first-hand how sustainability adds value, be it by helping hotels cut their energy costs or by financing solar energy solutions for businesses,” said Steven Puig, General Manager of Banco BHD. “In fact, BHD intends to implement energy efficiency measures and install solar panels on each of its 43 stand-alone bank branches. So far, with IFC’s support, four offices have done this, which resulted in US$43,000 in savings each year as well as reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.” Sustainability presents challenges for businesses, but also wide-ranging, evolving opportunities – especially as the cost of renewable energy technologies goes down. The private sector is well-suited to innovate and leverage new technologies to turn challenges into opportunities. About the Author Jun Zhang is IFC’s Senior NManager for the Caribbean. IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. For more information, visit www.ifc.org
IDB Provided US$2.8b for Latin America, Caribbean Climate Change Projects IDB provided US$2.8b for Latin America, Caribbean Climate Change Projects THE Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) says it committed US$2.8 billion for projects that address climate change, sustainable energy and environmental sustainability in Latin America and the Caribbean last year. According to its annual Sustainability Report, a detailed overview of its progress in investing in and safeguarding sustainability in Latin America and the Caribbean, the figure represents 20 per cent of the bank's overall lending last year. The report, issued on the side of the IDB´s Annual Meeting in Brazil, notes that the figure puts the IDB on target to meet its goal of 25 per cent by 2015. The report provides data and context on the IDB's efforts to invest in and safeguard sustainability by integrating environmental and social considerations throughout its project portfolio.
For example, of projects with high environmental and social risks, 87 per cent rated satisfactory in the implementation of safeguard measures in 2013, exceeding the IDB's goal of 85 per cent by 2015. Additionally, the report examines the challenges of the rapid urbanisation of the region and the bank's strategies to address them, including a newly approved Infrastructure Strategy and Advances in its Emerging and Sustainable Cities Initiative. "A sustainable and efficient infrastructure, the buildings, roads and services necessary for a modern society to operate smoothly, is essential for improving the quality of life for people in the region," said the IDB, adding that the Latin America and the Caribbean region faces major challenges in protecting its environment and tackling climate change.
The IDB said demand for electricity is expected to double by 2030, and annual damages from natural disasters total US$3.6 billion. The IDB said the new Infrastructure Strategy balances environmental, social and fiscal concerns, adding that new guidance on agriculture and natural resources, urban development and housing is consistent with existing bank strategies including the Climate Change and Clean Energy Strategy. In the past year, more than one million people have gained access to low-carbon forms of public transportation, the IDB said. Sixty per cent of the power generated by IDB projects was from low carbon sources.
IDB and Japan Sign Agreement to Promote Renewable Energy in the Caribbean The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) says it has signed an amendment with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to a 2011 Memorandum of Understanding and a 2012 Framework Agreement to support renewable energy and energy efficiency for the mitigation of climate change in Central America and the Caribbean. Under this amendment, the target amount of JICA’s co-financing for this programme, known as “Co-financing for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency” (CORE), will be increased to US$1 billion from a previous amount of US$300 million, “as well as the eligible beneficiaries will be expanded in Central America and the Caribbean,” said the IDB in a recent statement. It said the amendment was signed between IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno and JICA’s Senior Special Advisor Kunio Okamura during the IDB’s 2014 annual meeting here.
The co-financing program was a result of several agreements between the IDB and JICA, the most recent in March 2012, focusing on strategic partnerships on renewable energy and energy efficiency, “a key component of the bank’s response to climate change adaptation and mitigation.” Under the terms of the bank’s General Capital Increase agreed by the Board of Governors in 2010, the IDB said it sets a target of 25 percent of total lending to be dedicated to climate change adaptation, environmental sustainability and renewable energy. It said one of the key priorities of the JICA is to increase assistance and strengthen sustainable energy and climate change operations in Latin America and the Caribbean. Member-countries that already are eligible for JICA financing are: Belize, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Jamaica and Nicaragua. BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Grenada, Carbon War Room Sign Agreement to Develop Renewable Energy Sector The Grenada government says it has entered into an agreement with the Washington-based Carbon War Room (CWR) as it seeks to lure investors in renewable energy. Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell signed the expression of interest with the CWR, the brainchild of British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson. It is led by the former President of Costa Rica, Jose Maria Figueres Mitchell said that Grenada was seeking solutions to the high electricity prices faced by Grenadians which was due, in part, to the high cost of imported diesel fuel. He said the efforts by the Carbon War Room would be an important strand of an existing strategy already being developed by his administration.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
Mitchell acknowledged that “green” renewable energy held the possibility of lowering the island’s electricity prices. A government statement said that under the agreement signed recently in Washington, CWR would assist in attracting investors, and other organisations, to Grenada to finalise an updated roadmap for action and investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency. “The Roadmap envisaged would take stock of existing studies and investor appetite so as to propose solutions for (1) improving the regulatory environment; (2) energy efficiency in government buildings and assets, such as street lighting; (3) affordable energy efficiency services targeted at major energy users in the private sector, such as hotels and other businesses; (4) renewable energy solutions, such as wind and solar, that would have a positive impact on all households and; (5) longer term investment in geothermal energy, starting with exploratory drilling.”
Last year, Mitchell co-hosted the Caribbean Challenge Initiative with Sir Richard in the Virgin Islands, where pledges were made to help the Caribbean islands reduce importation of fossil fuel. Meanwhile, Prime Mitchell has told a panel discussion hosted by the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) that high-energy prices on the island were unsustainable. He told the discussion that the island was actively seeking partnerships to help lower its electricity prices by relying less on imported diesel and more on Grenada’s domestic sources of energy such as wind, solar and geothermal. Mitchell said there was a six trillion US dollar global market for new energy, and that the region as a whole needed to embrace this opportunity for a greener hemisphere as a strategy to increase competitiveness and growth. He said these efforts would provide jobs for youth, reduce the appeal of the drug trade, and promote social cohesion in the region and encouraged the Organisation of American States to play a more active role in this regard as part of its new vision.
St Lucia Makes Case for Caribbean SIDS in EU Meeting on Climate Change and Capacity Building, and (iv) Pre 2020 Mitigation Ambition. In his presentation to the meeting, Dr. Fletcher spoke of the need for steep near-term reductions in greenhouse gas emissions to ensure that the increase in global temperatures is kept to within the 1.5 degree goal agreed by Small Island Developing States as being critical for
that the impacts of Climate Change threatened to absorb an ever-increasing share of the GDP of SIDS like Saint Lucia, and it would not be fair or right for this burden to be left on the shoulders of SIDS and LDCs to address. He further indicated that any new Agreement had to establish a system to address the permanent Loss and Damage that SIDS were already facing
Hon. James Fletcher at High Level Climate Change Meeting at EU Headquarters
Saint Lucia’s Minister for Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology, Hon. James Fletcher, was the sole representative from the Caribbean in a Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change, convened by the European Union at the European Commission’s Headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday 30th April, 2014. The Ministerial Meeting was organized to generate discussion on the key issues leading up to the UN Secretary General’s Special Summit on Climate Change in September and the 20th Conference of the Parties (COP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Lima in December 2014, which is expected to agree on a new international Climate Change Agreement for 2015. Among the major subjects discussed by the Ministers and senior government officials of the 33 invited countries were (i) Mitigation in the 2015 Agreement, (ii) Adaptation, (iii) Means of Implementing Climate Finance, Technology Transfer
Ministers and Senior Climate Change Officials at EU Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change their survival. Saint Lucia’s Sustainable Development minister reminded the meeting of the absolute necessity for the new Climate Change Agreement to give explicit priority to the adaptation needs of Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries (LDCs), as they were the most vulnerable developing countries. Minister Fletcher pointed to his country’s unfortunate experiences with Hurricane Tomas and the Christmas Eve Trough to make the point to his ministerial colleagues
from the actions of other countries. In summarizing his country’s position to the EU Ministerial Meeting, Hon. James Fletcher called for the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol from all Parties to reflect a legally-binding commitment to deliver reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and expressed a need for progress in closing the gap in mitigation ambition.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
We’re celebrating our 50th Anniversary in St.Lucia! To thank our customers and the St. Lucian community for 50 great years, we’re offering great rates† on: ● ● ● ● ●
Switch Mortgages Scotia Plan Loans Cash Secured Loans Lot Loan Purchase New Auto Loans
Years of Service & Excellence
Come into the nearest branch and ask about Rates to Celebrate. It’s our way of saying “Thank you, St. Lucia!” stlucia.scotiabank.com
Discover what’s possible BusinessFocus / Jun | 76 for more information. ™Trademarks of The Bank of Nova Scotia, used under licence (where applicable). †Conditions apply. VisitMay stlucia.scotiabank.com
Years of Service & Excellence
St. Lucia TODAY, TOMORROW
TOGETHER BusinessFocus May / Jun |
CELEBRATES 50 YEARS in ST LUCIA Governor General Dame Pearlette was there. So were Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony, Country Managers from six regional branches along with the first Manager in St Lucia, now 84 years old. They came to celebrate Scotiabank’s 50th anniversary of operations in St Lucia, but the occasion also commemorated outgoing St Lucia Country Manager Chester Hinkson who retires in July. His successor Phillip Cross was there as well. A gala reception to mark the double occasion took place at the Bay Gardens Beach Resort and Spa and highlighted the anniversary celebration. Days earlier, Scotiabank had continued its good corporate citizen role by making generous donations to the Oncology Unit at Victoria Hospital and Dunnottar School which caters for 85 children with special education needs. Speaking at the reception, Prime Minister Anthony who is also the Minister of Finance, praised the “sheer efficiency” of the Bank of Nova Scotia, saying that it belonged to a tradition of Canadian banking that had helped nurse Canada through “this extraordinary meltdown” with minimum damage. The Prime Minister said what was clear was that the Canadian banks had become models for the rest of the world. Referring to the current state of the local economy Anthony said: “Were it not for the presence of the Canadian banks in our financial space the situation that we are now confronting would have been even more serious than it is.” The Prime Minister praised Chester Hinkson for showing concern for both people and country during his tenure as Scotiabank Country Manager and for his forthright comments about important issues facing the country. He suggested that Hinkson’s talents should continue to be available to St Lucia after his retirement. Canadian James Cameron, who managed the first Scotiabank branch in St Lucia when it opened in 1964 exhorted local employees never to forsake the commitment to banking based on relationships that had characterized the Scotiabank’s service over the years. He declared: “In the long run, you cannot build a successful bank on technology, service charges and interest spreads alone. You must build it on relationships, because it is only through relationships that you can earn and keep people’s trust.” BusinessFocus May / Jun
Cameron who spent nearly 48 years working with Scotiabank in Canada, Jamaica, Barbados, St Lucia and the United States, marveled at the changes that had taken place in St Lucia over the last 50 years. He said St Lucia had grown and development and Scotiabank had grown and developed with it. From a small branch with a handful of employees in 1964, Scotiabank had grown into a major player in St Lucia’s banking industry, Cameron said, adding that while as the first Manager he may have lit the match to start the fire, it was those who had come after him over the past 50 years who had truly fanned the flames. He spoke of the changes which had been taking place in the banking sector saying: “There is so much information technology used in banking today. Thanks to the incredible developments in electronic banking, our customers can transact business with us using a cell phone. Fifty years ago if you had told me this was the future of banking, I would never have believed you”. But there was one thing that he begged should never have to change: the commitment of Scotiabank to banking based on relationships. Hinkson praised Scotiabank for having been able to withstand all adversity thus far. He said: “When we assess ourselves versus the competition, I can safely say that we have a right to be proud of our success. Look back a bit—Barclays Bank which was in St Lucia for probably 100 years has disappeared. Chase Manhattan disappeared like AT&T. CIBC merged and is now FCIB/CIBC, Royal closed her doors in certain towns and islands then recently acquired RBTT.” But Scotiabank was 182 years in the business, 50 years in St Lucia, “standing tall and strong, with the same name”, Hinkson observed. He recalled that he had repeatedly advocated for change in St Lucia’s banking laws, adding that his recommendations were being made in the interest of all stakeholders and would see an improvement not only in the way we do business, but would also make St Lucia more competitive. Added Hinkson: “To see the much needed change that will make St Lucia the envy of other Caribbean countries, we have to think big. We have to set our vision way above the expectations of others. We have to stop comparing ourselves with the rest of the islands in the region, but rather with countries in the developed world….” He praised the part played by St Lucians in making the bank the success that it is today. Added Hinkson: “Let no one fool you, life is a two-way street. It always has been and always will be. You made the bank financially better off too because without your support over the years we would not be standing here today boasting about 50 years of service. Therefore the first people to whom our gratitude must go is our customers—the ones who pay our salaries.”
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
The First Manager Jim Cameron Reflects
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, It is a tremendous pleasure for me to be a part of this celebration. Unfortunately, my wife, Lucille couldn’t make it because of a previous commitment with our second son, Robert. But my eldest son, Alan, is here with me. I think Lucille sent him to keep me on track and to make sure I don’t talk for too long. It is a really a matter of chance that I am here this evening. You might even say that fate intervened to make sure that I would be. Let me explain. I came to St.Lucia with my family last year. While I was here, I decided I would visit the bank and meet the manager. It was a trip down memory lane, you might say. Naturally, when I got there, no one knew who I was, or what my connection was to the bank. And why should they? It was such a longtime ago. Nevertheless, I was greeted warmly and taken upstairs to meet Mr. Hinkson who could not have been more gracious. But why should this be surprising? When Lucille and I came here fifty years ago the people of St.Lucia opened their hearts and their homes to us. Thank God some things never change. Mr.Hinkson explained that the bank would be celebrating its 50th anniversary the following year, and he said he hoped I would be able to be here. He told me he would send me an invitation, and he kept his word. And that, ladies and gentlemen is how I came to be here this evening. Fifty Years. A lot has happened in that time. A lot of change has taken place, not only in St.Lucia but in banking too. When I look around the island today, it is wonderful to see the progress that has taken place. To begin with, there is a new infrastructure: a new, worldclass airport and the new roads and highways. I can tell you, back in the sixties I had some scary moments driving on the old road from Castries to Vieux Fort, with trucks filled with bananas coming at me round the bends. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Today, with the tunnel through the Morne and the new Millennium highway that is a thing of the past. Then there are all of the new buildings and shopping complexes; the residential developments; the hotels and restaurants: You now have one of the most vibrant tourism industries in the entire Caribbean. When Lucille and I first came here, there was only one hotel, and everyone mostly entertained at home. Today, you are spoiled for choice. St .Lucia has grown and developed, and it is very clear to me that this wonderful bank-Scotia Bank- has grown and developed with it. From a small brunch with a handful of employees, you have grown into a major player in the local banking industry. As the bank’s first manager, I may have lit the match to start the fire . But it is the people who have come after me over the past fifty years – people like Mr.Hinkson And his wonderful staff-who truly fanned the flames. I take my hat off to you all of you. Let me also say that back in those early days, I had a lot of help in getting Scotia Bank up and running. We were the new kid on the block, and we faced a competitor who had been here and elsewhere in the Caribbean for a long time. Customers weren’t easy to come by, because retail banking wasn’t anything as widespread as it is today. We started with a handful of corporate clients- businesses whose owners decided they would give us a chance. (And here, I have to pause and thank the people who placed their confidence in us: families such as the Beaubruns; the Gordons; the SallesMiquelles and the MacNamaras) Their trust and support enabled us to build the foundation on which Scotia Bank in St.Lucia stands today. I thank them. I said a few moments ago that a lot of change has taken place in banking itself over the past 50 years. There is so much information technology used in banking today. Thanks to the incredible developments in electronic banking, our customers can transact business with using a cell phone. Fifty years ago. If you had told me this was a future banking, I would never have believed you. At the time, there were no computers and there was no software designed specially to handle banking transactions. Everything had to be manually recorded. There were no credit cards or debit cards .Bank products were quite simple and unsophisticated, particularly when you compare them with all the highly complex derivative products that are now available. Yes, the nature of banking has changed all over the world. It has changed in New York, London, and Toronto and of course it has changed in St.Lucia too. The way we manage our business will continue to change as we strive hard to be more efficient and create new products to meet the needs of our customers. But as I stand here this evening, looking back over fifty years, there is one thing I beg you never to change. That one thing is the commitment of Scotia Bank to banking based on relationships. Whether you are a teller, a branch manager, or regional vice president, you must never forget this. In the long run, you cannot build a successful bank on technology, service charges and interest spreads alone. You must build it on relationships, because it is only through relationships that you can earn and keep people’s trust. Ladies and gentlemen, I have spent my whole working life in banking. And in total, I spent forty seven years and nine months working for the wonderful bank we know as Scotia Bank. I worked for the bank in Canada, Jamaica, Barbados, St.Lucia, and the United States. And I have fond memories of my experiences in all of these countries. But some of the fondest memories of all are the two years Lucille and I spent here in St.Lucia. It is lovely to be back once again, and I am so very grateful for the opportunity to share this celebration with you.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Remarks to Celebrate Scotiabank St. Lucia’s 50th Anniversary By : Bruce Bowen – Senior Vice-President Caribbean, Scotiabank
Thank you for joining us tonight as Scotiabank celebrates 50 Years of excellent service in St. Lucia. The Caribbean region is both an integral and vital part of the Scotiabank family, as we’ve been here for well over 100 years. In 1889, about 57 years after Scotiabank was established in Nova Scotia, the bank expanded internationally by opening a branch in Jamaica. This was the first branch outside of Nova Scotia, so the Caribbean has a special place in Scotiabank’s history. This initial step outside of its Canadian operations has led to Scotiabank being the leading bank in the Caribbean region, operating in 27 Caribbean countries, with over 15,000 employees and 450 branches serving more than two million customers. We are now Canada’s most international bank, because the experience and expertise developed from the Caribbean expansion has served as a foundation and springboard for Scotiabank to extend its footprint internationally in Central and Latin America, the Middle East and Asia. BusinessFocus May / Jun
These are recent developments compared to our operations here in St. Lucia, where we opened our doors in 1964. During its 50 years of operation, Scotiabank St. Lucia has also proven to be an integral and valuable part of the Scotiabank family. It has been a significant contributor to the growth of Scotiabank both internationally and regionally. One way St. Lucia has also contributed to Scotiabank’s regional success is by the diffusion of team members to take up strategic positions within the region and internationally, whether by managing a branch in the region like Orricia Denbow-Bullen who until recently served as a Branch Manager in Barbados, or like Fabian Louis, who is serving as Team Lead Corporate and Commercial Banking in St. Maarten, or Chrissy Laurent, Director of Scotia Insurance Eastern Caribbean Ltd to name just a few. Another way Scotiabank St. Lucia has contributed is by continuing to be a good and active corporate citizen over the years as it has stepped in to assist the community and the country wherever there was a need. Whether it involves health, like donating XCD200,000 towards the St Jude’s Hospital Restoration Fund, supporting the construction of the Victoria Hospital Oncology unit, or in educating our future leaders where we collaborate with UWI to provide undergraduate scholarships valued at $75,000 each over a 3-year period, Scotiabank St. Lucia continues to show its commitment to providing a positive impact to the community we serve. Within Caribbean East, St. Lucia is one of the largest markets, operates one of the busiest branches and has one of the largest sales forces. We’re proud to have financed many of the nation’s largest hotels, thus contributing to the vital tourism industry and national employment. We thank the Government and the people of St. Lucia for 50 successful years and look forward to many more. It’s fitting on this anniversary that we also celebrate an outstanding career. Chester Hinkson joined Scotiabank St. Lucia in 1966, two years after it first opened its doors. He’s served in senior positions regionally in Grenada, Haiti, Guyana and The Bahamas and internationally in Canada. He returned to St. Lucia as Country Head in 2006 and will retire on July 31st after 48 years of stellar service - Chester, thank you for your contributions to the country and to the team. We will miss you! Please join me in congratulating Chester Hinkson and the Scotiabank St. Lucia team for their hard work assisting Scotiabank to reach this noteworthy milestone. Happy 50th Anniversary St. Lucia!
Experience the French way in Rodney Bay! Opening Hours: 7 am to 10 pm (weekdays), 7 am to 11 pm (Weekends)
M&C GROUP OF COMPANIES AND PETER & COMPANY LTD.
We do Catering for
• Birthday Parties, • Christmas Parties, etc.
CONGRATULATE AND CELEBRATE WITH
Please Join Us... • • • •
At Breakfast For Lunch With the Kids For Happy Hour 5:30 pm till
• Yoplait, • Yogurt Martiniquea true delight.
ON THE OCCASSION OF THEIR
50 th Anniversary OF BUSINESS OPERATIONS IN SAINT LUCIA.
A Variety of Soups & Salads
French Bread: Baguette, Half Baguette, Loaves and Pastries the natural way! No Shortening, No Lard, No Additives, No Colouring, No Preservatives. Bakery Tel: 450 8306 Fax: 4521980 • Email: email@example.com Sidewalk main St, J.Q. Rodney Bay Shopping Mall, Gros Islet, St. Lucia Cafe Tel: 1(758) 452-0671 • Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
M&C Group of Companies 758-458-8000 • Peter & Company Ltd. 758-457-7000
Happy 50th Anniversary to Scotiabank Onwatch Caribbean Ltd P.O. Box GM815 Lower Tradewinds Drive Coubaril Castries St Lucia, W.I. T 758 452 7139 F 758 451 6619
Onwatch Plc H.Q. & Southern office Hole Farm Lye Green Crowborough East Sussex TN6 1UU
Caribbean Ltd keeping THe CARiBBeAn sAfe safety and security system integrators protecting profits nationwide
T 01892 603800
CCTV gUARDing sYsTeMs fOR HiRe
Onwatch Plc hOlds sIa aPPrOved cOntractOr status fOr the PrOvIsIOn Of PublIc sPace surveIllance cctv.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Congratulations to Scotiabank St. Lucia By David Noel: Managing Director – Caribbean East Region
Let me say how pleased I am to be here to celebrate this 50th anniversary with our St Lucian colleagues and community. The world has changed a lot in the last 50 years. In the five decades since Scotiabank first opened its doors on William Peter Boulevard in Castries, St. Lucia became an independent nation, Derek Walcott won the Nobel Prize for literature and the island has gone from an agriculture-based economy to a tourism-based one. Fifty years ago, a young man named Chester Hinkson was contemplating the start of his career and two years after Scotiabank first started to serve St. Lucians, he started work in the collections department. As the decades went on, he rose to become the Country Head for Scotiabank in St. Lucia. As Chester prepares to retire and Scotiabank prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary of serving St. Lucia, his journey BusinessFocus May / Jun
perfectly parallels how Scotiabank has grown and progressed over the last five decades here. When we first opened for business here back in 1964, we had six employees and just one branch, run by Mr James Cameron. We’re absolutely delighted that James is here tonight to celebrate with us. James, 50 years ago, would you have imagined sitting here tonight? Since those early days, we’ve expanded to three branches and an extensive ATM network, with over 130 employees. It’s interesting to note that when Scotiabank first arrived in 1964, there were hardly any phones in the island and certainly no internet. And now we offer telephone, mobile phone and internet banking as a matter of course. A lot has changed in St. Lucia and the world at large in the last 50 years. However, there are some things that have not changed and will not change, such as our commitment to offering the
very best service. This is a core value which we have held dear from the start and which has been key in helping Scotiabank stand the test of time. This is why as Scotiabank celebrates this golden anniversary, I have to pay tribute to our fantastic, hard-working team of Scotiabankers. They have set the pace and Scotiabankers of more recent vintage, myself included, have a sterling example to follow. Through our dedicated staff members, Scotiabank has truly experienced some of the best of St. Lucia. Our employees continue to be passionate about the growth and prosperity of the company and the country as a whole. This is in keeping with Scotiabank’s core purpose which is to help our customers become financially better off. I also have to highlight our connection with the local community, which has been key in helping us reach 50 years in St. Lucia. At Scotiabank, we know that our success will be built on making a genuine bond with the community. This is not just a local philosophy but a global Scotiabank ethos, embodied in our Bright Future philanthropic outreach program. This is why Scotiabank has supported regional initiatives such as Regional Testing Day and the Kiddy Cricket program for many years now. On the local level, we have invested time, effort and money behind initiatives like the KiddiCrew Summer Fun Camp, the Rotary Motor Treasure Hunt and of course, the Scotiabank UWI Scholarship, which we have offered in St. Lucia since 1991. We will continue to contribute to these causes because St. Lucia and its people matter to us. We know that you are the reason for this season of celebration. For 50 years, you have trusted Scotiabank to help you discover what’s possible as we strived to help you and your families become financially better off. Thank you to the Government and People of St. Lucia, for allowing us to serve your community for the last 50 years and congratulations to the Scotiabank St. Lucia team for an unbeaten half century!
PACS Professional & Confidential Services
P. O. Box 375 New Dock Rd Vieux Fort St. Lucia
Excellent, reliable and prompt service you can afford
Office Tel/Fax: (758) 454 1200 Home Office Tel/Fax: (758) 454 8505 Mobile: (758) 719 8837 preferred Mobile: (758) 485 3916 Magic Jack: 1 347 568 8749 Email: email@example.com
PACS offers the following services: • Accounting • Customs Brokerage • Freight Forwarding
Take Control of your future. MAMPA TRAINING INSTITUTE (MTI) / BTEC EDEXCEL CENTER Is now offering courses in the various sectors as follows: HOSPITALITY - Professional Cooking, Food & Beverage, Kitchen Services, Housekeeping, Principles of Customer Service in Hospitality, Leisure Travel and Tourism BUSINESS - Management, Marketing, Law and Legal work, Principles of Business Administration, Understanding Business Enterprises, Understanding Enterprise and Entreprenership
Congratulations to Scotiabank on their 50th Anniversary. • Investments through the replacement of term Deposits (flexible interest frequencies) • Loan Financing – Commercial & Consumer – (Consumer/personal, Vehicles, Machinery, Equipment, Commercial Mortgages, Land, Debt Consolidation • Lease Financing (for vehicles) • Premium Financing (for vehicles)
FINANCE Sagicor Financial Centre Choc Estate, Castries, St. Lucia Tel: 1(758) 452-4272 or 1(758) 285-5868 / 70 Fax: 1(758) 452-4279 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.sagicor.com
HEALTH - Medical Administration, Medical Secretaries, Knowledge of Custodial Care, Working in the Health Sector, Working with Individual with Diabetes, Introduction to Health and Social Care Duration of courses are from 4 weeks to one year. On completion, students are guaranteed interview with MAMPA Employment Agency for career development in their chosen field. For more information, please feel free to call or us: Register Now Mampa Training Institute 39 Brazil Street Castries, Saint Lucia, W.I Tel: - (758) 451 6163 Cell: - (758) 584 7262 Mampa18@hotmail.com
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
CHESTER HINKSON SAYS FAREWELL AFTER 44 YEARS
As I reflect on how I got into this great bank I cannot help but share this story with you. After leaving St. Mary’s College with the requisite number of subjects of which Maths and English were compulsory I tried to get into the work force. I applied to every bank in town. Barclays Bank never responded, Royal Bank gave me a test and told me I failed. Bank of Nova Scotia advised that my application will be held on file for future reference as there were no openings at that point in time, 1St National then St. Lucia Cooperative Bank gave me a job with a starting salary of EC $100 00 per month. Seven months later Bank of Nova Scotia contacted me and offered me a job. I was sorry to leave Cooperative Bank but had to as I was promised a $20.00 raise which I never received. The Bank of Nova Scotia asked when can I start to which I replied “yesterday”. What you must know is that in those days there were few if any like me at those foreign banks. How times have changed. Not so with the Bank of Nova Scotia. Today after 50 years of service to the Government and People of St. Lucia I stand here as a proud St. Lucian to celebrate this major milestone with a promise that another St. Lucian will again sit at the helm of this bank some day in the not too distant future. Fifty years, what a journey, and how proud I am to have been part of this incredible experience and journey. As I look back and try to come to grips with the changes that have taken place over the past fifty years I cannot help but marvel at the success of this great institution called the Bank of Nova Scotia that has changed the lives of so many, making them financially better off. Let no one fool you, life is a two way street. It always has been and always will be. You made the bank financially better off too, because without your support over the years we would not be standing here today boasting about 50 years of service. BusinessFocus May / Jun
Therefore, the first people to whom our gratitude must go is our customers—the ones who pay our salaries. Thank you for your loyalty and support over these many years and thank you for the many merit increases and bonuses we all received. On a more personal note, I must thank the staff that has supported me throughout this journey. Our Mantra One Team, One Goal, One Family has become part of our DNA and has contributed significantly to our success. Our promise is to continue to provide you with service above the level of your expectations and to make each and every customer financially better off. Our shared values of –Integrity, Respect, Commitment, Insight and Spirit will continue to play a pivotal role in the manner in which we do business and I hope that 50 years from now we can repeat these same words “We are here to make every customer financially better off”. We must at all times work as a team, if not we will fail and failure for us is not an option. I encourage you therefore whether you are a public servant or you are in the private sector – banking, tourism or whatever put your country and your people first, success is sure to follow. In other words, take care of your people the dollars will take care of themselves. Every one of us here is a leader in some way or another and as leaders we must try to understand the feelings of others. People want to be treated with dignity and treating people with dignity requires empathy which cannot be taught. This journey has not been without its undulations, obstacles and challenges. Not to mention the dismal economic climate that has plagued the business community in the past five years that shows no immediate signs of abating. This bank, your bank has withstood all the economic vicissitudes that have hit us. When we assess ourselves versus the competition, I can safely say that we have a right to be proud of our success. Look back a bit - Barclays Bank which was in St. Lucia for probably 100 years has disappeared, Chase Manhattan Bank disappeared like AT&T. CIBC merged and is now FCIB/CIBC, Royal Bank closed her doors in certain towns and islands, then recently acquired RBTT. To tell you the truth, I am not even sure what their name is. However, here we are, 182 years in the business, 50 years in St. Lucia, standing tall and strong, with the same name. We are rated one of the ten strongest and best run banks in the world. That implies that with us your money is safe and prudently managed.
You are probably aware that I am retiring as of August 01st 2014. I want therefore to take this opportunity to congratulate my replacement Mr. Phillip Cross who is here tonight. I want to thank the staff who supports me day in and day out. Without your unflinching and unconditional support, I would have failed. I want to thank my peers from the region many of whom are here to celebrate with us - thank you for sharing your many best practices over the years. Please allow me to acknowledge your presence. Basil Alexander - St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Gordon Julien - St.john’s Antigua, Jim Alson – Roseau, Dominica, Elie Bendaly - St. George’s, Grenada, Raymond Green – Philipsburg, St.Maarten, Mrs. Marcia Gaudet - previously Country Head St. Kitts now HR Director, Trinidad & Tobago.
never had the resources to give me a car, a piece of land or a house, but for sure she gave me ambition, taught me what compassion, humility, empathy, respect and love are all about and for that and more I will remain eternally grateful. The other one lady (save the best for last) - is alive and well and has stood with me through thick and thin, through bad times and good times. Ladies and gentlemen, my wife and best friend -Delicia. Without you Hun and our three sons - Cash, Lester and Ricky at my side I would not have made it. When I appointed you to the role of nonpolitical First lady, I did not put an expiry date on the appointment, so tonight I want to reassure you that you are “First Lady for Life”. In conclusion, ladies and gentlemen many have asked me what I intend to do
on retirement. My friends, life is not a destination, life is a journey and mine is not yet over.
I had a surprise visit yesterday from a family banker from Canada and I must say I was moved to tears when I walked in from work and I saw my son Cash who is here to celebrate with me. A special thanks to our first Branch Manager, James Cameron for taking time off the tennis court for a while to join us here tonight. That is deeply appreciated. I want to thank the banking committee who worked tirelessly in putting everything in place for tonight’s celebration. There are two great ladies in my life, one has gone to meet her savior and is smiling on me here tonight with her friends. My mother Iona. May she rest in peace. She BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Scotiabank a Culture of Long Service Scotiabank articulates three clearly diversity goals, maintaining a unique Human Resource Strategy that drives the organization from strength to strength, creating a long service work force and customer base that truly reflects the St. Lucian society today. • We have been dubbed the EMPLOYER OF CHOICE, one that reflects the community and one that attracts and retains talent from a variety of backgrounds. • Scotiabank aims to reaffirm the bank's commitment to be a positive work place for all employees. • Scotiabank strengthens our relationships and our brand image in diverse communities. At the staff level this is manifested through the culture of long service which is second to none, locally, regionally and internationally. In St. Lucia, out of a staff of 130 employees, full time and part-time, Scotiabank boasts the highest staff loyalty record in the Commercial Banking Sector. Worthy of note is that most of the staff has been with the bank for more than 10 years representing over 60% of the workforce whilst the Senior Management staff together has worked for over 350 years of banking experience in total. This is living testimony of the "ONE TEAM, ONE GOAL, ONE FAMILY, philosophy preached by the bank. This characteristic is typical of the Scotiabank worldwide network. Staff loyalty and long service is legendary. All employees are taught to ceaselessly deliver on the corporate promise "to help our customer become financially better
BusinessFocus May / Jun
off. Consequently, employees daily live this core purpose as they strive to attain their individual professional goals alongside the broader corporate goals of the institution. Scotiabank's unity as an organization is its most powerful source. The Scotiabank group serves almost 10 million customers in over 50 countries worldwide and employees total 54,000. Senior Management Team Scotiabank St. Lucia (99% Over 20 Years of Service & Banking Experience.)
• Chester Hinkson - General Manager & Country Head - St. Lucia (44 years)
• Barbara Rummage - Commercial • • • • • • • • • •
Banking Manager - St. Lucia (30 years) Orricia Denbow - Bullen - Branch Manager –Wm. Peter Boulevard, St. Lucia (42 years) Carol Henry - Personal Banking Manager - Wm Peter Boulevard, St. Lucia (30 years) Linda Jn Baptiste - Manager Operations & Administration St. Lucia (35 years) Anicia Alexander - Branch Manager -Rodney Bay, St. Lucia (35 years) Imelda Smith-St. Ange - Branch Manager - Vieux-Fort, St. Lucia (26 years) Solomon Emmanuel - Acting Branch Manager- Vieux-Fort, St. Lucia (25 years) Serge L'Africain -Senior Credit Solutions Manager- St. Lucia (24 years) Gloria Williams - Director - Credit Solutions, St. Lucia (20 years) Robert Frederick - Commercial Associate Trainee- St. Lucia (30 years) Adrian Cox - Senior Client Relationship Manager- St. Lucia (9 years)
Total number of years together is roughly 350 years total Banking experience among the 12 Senior Management Officers). In addition Scotiabank St Lucia Staff have been recognised for their Management and Leadership Skills with many of them being appointed to Regional Positions at the Bank’s Corporate Headquarters and in other island locations. Others have been appointed to Senior positions at the various branches across the Caribbean. St. Lucian Managers attached to the Managing Director's Office BARBADOS / Caribbean East Region
• Crisy Laurent - General Manager-
Scotia Insurance Eastern Caribbean Ltd (15 years) • Delia Charlemagne - ManagerMulti-Product , East & South Caribbean, English Caribbean Region (15 years) • Gezella Claxton - Manager- AMLBranch Training and Support (15 years) • Shannon Leonce - Assistant ManagerAML -Investigation and Reporting (15 years) • Wendy Delmar - Manager Sales & Service Support (15 years) St. Lucian Managers attached to the Caribbean East Countries
• Fabian Louis - Commercial Banking Manager- St. Maarten (18 years)
• Verne Trim - Personal Banking Manager- Dominica (25 years)
• Bruno Didier- Manager - Portfolio Management- Barbados (14 years)
Congratulations to Scotiabank on their 50th Anniversary
Vieux Fort Ind'l estate, St. Judes Highway, Vieux Fort, St. Lucia Tel: (758) 454-7777/65 • Fax: (758) 454 -5567 Web: www.smjaleel.com
Total Health Care Pharmacy Specializing In: Pharmaceuticals * Prescriptions * Medical Supplies Patient Aids e.g. Knee Braces * Wheel Chairs Special Senior Citizen’s Discount Cosmetics & Beauty Products * Baby Care Products Vitamins * Toiletries * Oxygen Theraphy Products Mon - Thurs & Sat. 8:30am to 5:30pm Fri. 8:30 am - 6:00pm Charlery Bldg. Cnr. Clarke Street & Laborie / Vieux Fort Hwy. Telephone: (758) 454 8055 Fax: (758) 454 8045
EDICAL SUPP M S S E R LIES EXP
Distributors of - Medical Supplies and Equipment Dental Supplies * Veterinary Supplies * Pharmaceuticals Also Available - Air Pressure Mattress Wheel chairs Other Patient Aids & Equipment and Supplies for Doctors.
We Order Supplies On Special Request. We Offer Competitive Prices and Island Wide Deliveries P. O. Box 395, Vieux Fort, Saint Lucia Telephone: (758) 454 6565 Fax: (758) 454 7862 BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Scotiabank Scholarship Fund Staff to congratulate Jessica on her great achievement: “My special Thanks to Scotiabank for allowing me the opportunity to pursue tertiary level education at the St. Augustine Campus in Trinidad. As the first blind St. Lucian Student, to me it was just not a Scholarship I was given, as I was propped and assisted by Scotiabank staff every step of the way, specifically Ms. Delia Charlemagne who ensured that all my physical and emotional needs were covered, at all times. I felt like I was part of the Scotia family every step of the way and will forever be grateful to Scotiabank.” Jessica is now employed at the St. Lucia Blind Welfare Association, assisting young persons to fulfil their dreams.
How are Scholarships Processed? Jessica Jacobie (BSc. Management Studies) Jessica Jacobie, our scholarship holder for 2004-2007 made history in St. Lucia, totally blind, physically challenged, yet she attended university through the opportunity given to her by SCOTIABANK. At a press conference held on her return from graduation Jessica informed us that she faced numerous challenges as the university was not prepared for her disability. She had to get students to read assignments to her so she can complete her exams. Despite all the challenges she faced, her perseverance and determination to succeed got her through in addition, she could not do it without thehelp of Scotiabank, not only monetary but physically supporting her, by taking up her cause during her difficult periods, by writing to the university administration, requesting an intervention. The university then strove to take up her cause and make her stay a comfortable one, by providing her with equipment and the tools necessary for her disability. She graduated with a BSC in Management Studies. Jessica made those comments at a function held for her at the Main Branch by Scotiabank after she graduated, where we invited her family and friends, management of the St. Lucia Blind Welfare Association and Scotiabank BusinessFocus May / Jun
Scotiabank St. Lucia continues to offer opportunities to nationals of St. Lucia through the University of the West Indies. The scholarship is given for a maximum of three years and is offered every two years. To qualify, the individual must have attained academic excellence, has proof of Dire FINANCIAL NEED, good character and must be recommended by the university. After completing the forms, they should be submitted to the University for processing, as admission to UWI, must be obtained before applying for a scholarship. Scotiabank St. Lucia has been giving these scholarships since 1991, more than two decades, and many students have graduated with either 1st or 2nd class honors; some of them were even granted scholarships by the university to pursue their Masters because of their good results.
Listed below are our Scholarship graduates from 1991 – 2014. Raquel Willie - BA History
UWI Cavehill Campus- Barbados
Armstrong Alexis - Bsc. Social Work (First Class Honors) UWI Mona Campus Jamaica 1992-1995
Cynthia Greenidge - MBBS UWI Mona Campus Jamiaca 1993-1994
Lydia Charlemagne BA English (1st class Honors)
UWI St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad 1995-1997
Nicholas Emanuel - Bsc General (1st class Honors) UWI St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad 1996-1997 Terencia Joseph - BA History
(2nd class honors) UWI St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad 1999-2001
Disraeli James - BSC Management Studies (2nd class honors) UWI St. Augustine, Trinidad 2000-2003
Shanta Louis - BSC Mathematics UWI St. Augustine, Trinidad 2000-2003
Alisa Daniel - BSC Management UWI St. Augustine, Trinidad 2003-2004
Mingee Lucien - Bsc. Accounting UWI St. Augustine, Trinidad (2004 – 2005)
Jessica Jacobie - Bsc. Management Studies UWI St. Augustine, Trinidad (2004 – 2007)
Tricia Moffatt - Bsc. Law
UWI Barbados & Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad (2008 – 2011)
Ernest Hilaire - Bsc. Social & Political Delon Walcott - Bsc. Information Science) UWI Cavehill Campus, Barbados Technology UWI Cave Hill Campus, Barbados 1992-1993 (2011 – 2013)
Scotiabank Scholar Eyes Legal Success
Tricia Moffatt (BSc. Law) Scotiabank’s latest St Lucian scholar has successfully completed her studies at the University of the West Indies and has set her sights on an outstanding career in the legal profession. Tricia Moffat, originally from Pierrot in Vieux Fort North, was called to the Bar in St Lucia in October 2013 after earning a Bachelor of Laws degree with First Class Honours. She is the daughter of Moril and Judith Moffat and was understandably elated with Scotiabank’s role in her success.
She said: “Without Scotiabank, I would not be where I am today. I am very pleased that an institution such as Scotiabank has shown such genuine interest in the development of the youth and I can only hope that other institutions follow suit. Coming from an island where University education is not free, the importance of this bank’s initiative over the years should be highlighted and applauded. Thank you Scotiabank and I hope you continue the good work”. Ms. Moffat was awarded her scholarship in 2008 during her second year at the UWI’s Cave Hill, Barbados Campus. Through the years, her academic resume has been one of sheer brilliance beginning at the Vieux Fort Comprehensive Secondary School where she graduated with the “most outstanding student” award in eight subjects: Mathematics, English and English Literature, Principles of Accounts, Principles of Business, Spanish, Integrated Science and Social Studies. She also got the award for Best CXC results of 2003 and the award for overall Most Outstanding Student. At UWI , Ms. Moffat placed in the top one per cent of students in the Law Programme with First Class Honours and also received the award for Best Level One Performance in the Law Programme as well as the Time Kendal Q.C. Award for the Law of Contract. Then at the Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad, she was the top performing St Lucian student graduating third out of a class of 228 students with the Certificate of Merit. The Certificate of Merit is the highest grade certificate awarded by the Council of Legal Education to students who obtain at least 9 out of the 11 courses done at the school. Ms. Moffat was one of only seven students in her class to receive it. What made her choose Law as a career? Ms. Moffat said that from a tender age, she realized that attorneys had a special place in society where they were able to help the weak and underprivileged. “I was drawn to the profession because it would allow me to help other people. I also believed that I possess the traits that are common to the most successful lawyers. I am achievement-oriented, a talented writer, competitive, confident and analytical”, she said. She said her future goals are to work hard towards becoming the best commercial litigator in the Caribbean and to provide her clients with the best possible representation. Whatever achievements she records from here on, Ms. Moffat says she will be eternally grateful to Scotiabank for its “substantial financial contribution” to her education and training. She said: “I think it is unfortunate that so many intelligent St. Lucians are unable to pursue their career goals due to a lack of funds. I hope my success can serve as a source of inspiration to every young person who dreams of becoming something great in life yet feels hampered due to his or her financial situation. With hard work, dedication and of course, assistance, one can achieve whatever one is determined to achieve”. Ms. Moffat has joined the legal firm of Peter Foster and Associates as a junior attorney.
BusinessFocus May / Jun | 91
The Nursery for Future
West Indian Stars The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) in conjunction with Scotiabank, created the program SCOTIABANK KIDDY CRICKET, in 1999, with St. Lucia chosen as the pilot for the program. The program was created to keep Cricket alive from the kiddy stage in the Caribbean. The program is made up of a coaching manual prepared by the coaches of WICB, to be rolled out to Teachers at the various schools and also to volunteer SCOTIABANK staff. On an annual basis Keith Charlery – Head Cricket Coach at St Lucia’s Ministry of Sports holds coaching
BusinessFocus May / Jun
clinics for Teachers and Scotiabankers who in turn train the kids. The Concept: - Children are taught the basics of cricket properly, so they can have it right the first time. The kids get exposure at international games; they actually play a game at the match, during the lunchtime breaks, at the various stadia throughout the Caribbean. This is like an incentive for the children, 12 children from each school are chosen to attend the match, and 12 schools are chosen per match, with their Teacher coaches and the volunteer Scotiabank coach. Before we had a stadium, Mr. Keith Charlery - Head Coach of the Ministry of Sports conducted summer clinics for kids throughout the communities in St. Lucia. The Ministry of Education/Sports chooses the schools and has launched the
Programme at a number of schools per year since the inception. To date all of the infant and primary schools have now been added to the Kiddy Cricket list. The St. Lucia National Cricket Association coordinates the activities at the international matches, to include the Kiddy Cricket presentation. An additional feature was added to the Kiddy Cricket arena. Scotiabank in association with the WICB Educational Department and some members of the Ministry of Sports created a Teachers’ manual “Clarence goes to School”, which features a variety of subject matter, associating them with the sport of Cricket. It was created so that Teachers can use it as a reference guide in teaching the various subjects and in so doing get the kids focused on the game.
The subjects are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
Language arts Mathematics Science Design & Technology Information & Communication Technology Social Studies Art & Design Healthy Life Styles in Cricket
This program was officially launched on the 28th of March 2003 at the Beausejour Cricket Ground and Principals and Teachers attended a training session conducted by a Scotiabank Representative and Dr. Michael Seepersaud- Chief Cricket Development Officer with WICB at the time. Every new school launched into Kiddy Cricket, is supplied with a Teacher’s Manual for use at the school. Scotiabank supplies the schools with two sets of cricket gear each and is now working on a plan in association with the Ministry of Sports and the St Lucia National Cricket Assciation to create a Kiddy Cricket tournament among the schools. In the Caribbean over 1,000 schools have participated in the program, with over 15,000 kids, 6,000 teacher coaches and over 400 Scotiabank coaches. Meanwhile in the Eastern Caribbean, Keith Charley, the West Indies Cricket Board’s Territorial Development Officer in St Lucia has said that many young, Kiddy Cricket Graduates have been coming up the ranks, most successful among them being Windward Islands players like Dalton Polius and Audy Alexander. Dalton Polius is a member of the recent intake for the West Indies High Performance Academy at the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus and has graduated to play for both the St Lucia and Windward Islands Senior Teams. He previously played for the West Indies Under 19 squad in 2009. He has been declared “Junior Cricketer of the Year in St Lucia 2008 and 2009 and has received a cricket scholarship to attend school in the UK. He credits his achievements so far to his roots in Kiddy Cricket “I would not have reached so far in cricket if it wasn’t for my exposure to the Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket program at the Grande Riviere combined school in St Lucia. This program taught me the basics of cricket in a fun and relaxed environment which certainly developed my passion for the game. It also helped me developed many important qualities such as discipline and teamwork.” Audy Alexander, another outstanding Kiddy Cricket Graduate from St. Lucia has captained Saint Lucia to victory in the Windward Islands National Under 19 Championship in 2010. He explains that in the absence of a primary school cricket programme in that island, Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket is the main catalyst for youngsters to get early exposure, which builds enthusiasm and helps them to aspire to become professionals. “I remember the excitement we felt as children in Kiddy Cricket, it was tremendous. Our teachers, coaches and everyone would prepare us for the big moments at the cricket venues and just seeing the big field, the professionals at play and the huge crowd filled us with excitement and energy. Man, we couldn’t wait for our moment to become like them” The Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket Program helps the children of the region develop self-confidence and self-discipline and ensures the continued preservation and celebration of the Caribbean heritage and identity. SCOTIABANK - SOLE SPONSOR FOR KIDDY CRICKET SCOTIABANK - BANKER TO WEST INDIES CRICKET BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Scotiabank St Lucia Wins Best Internet Bank Title by Global Finance Magazine Scotiabank has been named the Best Consumer Internet Bank and Corporate Internet Bank in St Lucia, by Global Finance Magazine for its outstanding service to online customers according to a Media Release of 15 August 2013. Overall, the Bank received the title of Best Consumer Internet Bank in 22 countries and Best Corporate Internet Bank in 17countries across the Caribbean and Central America. “We are excited to be named Best Internet Bank in St Lucia by Global Finance Magazine and recognized for the online services that we provide to our customers,” said Country Head, Chester Hinkson. “This achievement reflects Scotiabank’s commitment to offering our customers an online platform that is secure, easy to use and available when and where they need it.” “The online banking world is constantly evolving how banks and their customers interact," said Joseph D. Giarraputo, publisher of Global Finance. "Scotiabank BusinessFocus May / Jun
has made a significant impact in serving their clients in many countries through their Internet services." Scotiabank was also named Global Bank of the Year and Bank of the Year in the Americas in 2012 by The Banker Magazine, a Financial Times publication, and ranks among Bloomberg’s top twenty most stable banks in the world. Mr. Hinkson noted that Scotiabank’s prudent risk management and conservative policies had proven to be the right approach especially in light of the global economic crisis. “It is important for your financial Institution to be secure,” he said. “Throughout the region, as well as the world, we are recognized for our stability.” Mr. Hinkson said Scotiabank has come through a difficult period ahead of the competition by turning itself into a “very efficient, stable, focused organisation” supported by strong commitment from employees.
BusinessFocus May / Jun |
William Peter Boulevard Renham Building Support Staff
Rodney Bay Branch
Vieux-Fort Branch BusinessFocus May / Jun
Descartes Laboratories Committed to Excellent Customer Service
Pap Smear HIV Test
Drug Test D-dimer Test
Health Card Services LFT
Opening Hours: Weekdays: 7:30am - 4:30pm
Saturdays: 8:00am - 12:30pm
Rodney Bay Industrial Estate, Box130, Castries
Tel: 1 (758) 454-8148 / 1 (758) 454-3651 Fax: 1 (758) 454-8080 Address: Clarke Lane, Vieux Fort, Saint Lucia Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
COX AND COMPANY LIMITED P.O. Box 88 | Vide Boutielle | Castries, St. Lucia, W.I
Cox & Co ad
The management and staff of Cox and Company Limited wishes to congratulate The Bank of Nova Scotia on their 50th Anniversary in St. Lucia and wish them continued success in the future
Tel: (758) 456-5000 • Fax: (758) 456-5016 • Web: www.coxcoltd.com • Email: email@example.com CRUISE SHIP, YACHTS & CARGO SHIP AGENTS CUSTOMS BROKERS & FREIGHT FORWARDERS FULL DESTINATIONS MANAGEMENT PHOTO & VIDEO SERVICES
FERRY SERVICES TICKETING AGENT LOGISTICS CONSULTANTS SHORE EXCURSION OPERATOR SNUBA & SEA TREK BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Sharing is Caring Throughout the years Scotiabank St. Lucia has surpassed the realms of being a common financial institution. As Scotiabank celebrates its 50 year milestone, the bank acknowledges the loyalty and support that the people of St. Lucia have shown over the years which has been a prime contributing factor to its success. Scotiabank continues to fulfil its social responsibility as a corporate entity. By not only rendering quality service but by building trusting relationships and making significant contributions to its community and in the lives of the people it serves. Scotiabank Bright Future Programme has been the umbrella that shelters all the charitable causes we care about to help children. Over the years Scotiabank has given generously, especially in the areas of improving local health care, culture, environment and education. As Scotiabank looks forward to another 50 years of service to the people of this promising land, we recap on the moments that touched our hearts and those of the people we so proudly serve.
4) A $10,000 contribution towards better health care is given to the Victoria Hospital to improve the quality of service to patients in its Oncology ward.
1) Scotiabank has been the proud sponsor of Kiddy Cricket in St. Lucia for over a decade now. Five years after it had begun moving across the Caribbean region in search of talented young sportsmen. The Kiddy Cricket programme was designed to train, mold and graduate future skilled national players throughout the region. The programme has taught over 200,000 children across the region the rudiments of cricket and has produced several exceptionally good players.
9) Scotiabank has been giving tertiary level scholarships that have benefitted several outstanding students on the island who were in need of financial assistance. St. Luciaâ€™s present High Commissioner in the UK was one of the recipients of this scholarship. Also, an outstanding physically challenged young lady was able to attend University to pursue a degree.
2) Scotiabank sponsors 20 children to partake in a two week Summer Camp annually, from July - August. Some of the children of the Ciceron Orphanage look forward to this fun outing and participate every year through Scotiabankâ€™s sponsorship. 3) Scotiabank makes a donation of $130,000 over a three year period to the Junior Achievement programs in schools at both the local and senior levels.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
5) Students of the Dunnottar School receive $5000 to assist them with transportation costs, to and from a school which presently offers special education to 85 children on the island. 6) Scotiabank employees aid two families consisting of ten and nine members respectively, from impoverished communities with food items and toiletries costing almost $750 USD. 7) The National Steel Bands Association receives a donation from Scotiabank to support Panorama and encourage kids participation in cultural activities. 8) Scotiabank contributes financially towards the development of the Castries port that remains a major national and economic asset to this day.
10.Scotiabank is involved in a project that provides assistance to children in St. Lucia and the rest of the Caribbean who suffer from cancer and other blood disorders. 10 Scotiabank pledges $100,000 to support St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Dominica towards their recovery efforts in the wake of the recent December 2013 storm.
11 A generous donation of $ 200,000 given to St. Jude’s restoration fund five years ago. To repair damages caused by a fire that destroyed the hospital’s surgical ward and operating theatre.
12 Scotiabank partakes in a campaign that raises public awareness of HIV/AIDS during a HIV Regional Testing Day that is observed by 39 branches in 15 Caribbean countries. 13 The bank periodically holds customer education seminars and workshops on topics such as cash flow management, marketing the business, understanding the marketplace, benefits of proper records and book keeping. 14 Scotiabank also provides aid to assist young health care and business professionals who have completed their studies overseas and are in need of financial assistance to start their own business through its Scotia Professional Plan. The programme offers an enhanced financial service package designed specifically to meet the needs of independent professionals such as doctors, lawyers, dentists and architects. With the objective to assist them in attaining the vision they might have for their practice while still being able to enjoy a financially sound future. Throughout the years Scotiabank has made it their business to support the dreams of others and create a brighter future for the community and in the lives of the people it has been proud to serve. Thanks Scotiabank for 50 Years of Sharing and Caring.
Sales & Services of
• Petrol Sales (Gas Station) • Cooking Gas (20lbs) • Auto Parts for most vehicles • Servicing of most vehicles • Sale and installation of • Batteries • Electronic Checking of most Vehicles and Charging Systems
Errold Cyril-Managing Director
Happy 50th Anniversary to Scotia Bank
Chausee Road, Castries Tel: 1(758) 452-2495 or 452-1974 or 452-5502 Fax: 1(758) 452-2496 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
SLASPA would like to congratulate Scotiabank on their 50th Anniversary of Business and Operations in St. Lucia.
Saint Lucia Air and Sea Ports Authority P.O. Box 651 | Manoel St | Castries Saint Lucia T: (758) 457 6100 | F: (758) 457 6190 E: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.slaspa.com BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Chester Hinkson - ScotiaBank Wins Award for Corporate Leadership Being a strong leader in an industry that many deem to be all about figures and tallies can sometimes serve to pigeonhole such a leader. That’s certainly not the case with Chester Hinkson. When he does retire as Scotiabank’s Country Manager at the end of July this year – a position in which he has served since 2006 – Hinkson would have given over four decades of service to the banking sector which has somehow turned him into a larger-than-life figure. Such a stature proved good enough to earn Hinkson the Award for Corporate Leadership at this year’s St. Lucia Business Awards. Ever since joining Scotiabank’s Collections Department in October, 1966 – just two years after the bank began doing business here – Hinkson has made his way to the top of the bank’s food chain of roles. That included him becoming the first Saint Lucian to become Country Manager. Hinkson’s knowledge of the business saw him serving in six countries and countless positions before reaching the pinnacle from which he is set to retire at the end of July. He has served in senior positions in the Bahamas, Canada, Grenada, Guyana and Haiti, and Saint Lucia. Among the many accolades he has amassed over his decades of service, Hinkson is credited with pioneering Scotiabank’s first micro-credit programme during his stint in Guyana. For that feat, he earned the Canadian Award for International Development from the Canadian government. Aside from his commitment to Scotiabank, Hinkson has managed to become an iconic businessman whose experience saw him serving in such capacities as president of the St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, and president of the St. Lucia Bankers Association. Managing Director of Scotiabank Caribbean East, David Noel, referred to Hinkson as “an icon”, adding that Hinkson “has experienced and weathered many political, economic, social and financial storms” during his sterling career. Noel also hailed Hinkson’s determined spirit, saying that Hinkson is a man who fights for what he believes in. “He fights for what he believes in, especially if he feels it is in the best interest of all stakeholders,” Noel said. Hinkson’s leadership and loyalty at Scotiabank for all these years are hallmarks that have inspired many businesses the world over. Whether or not Scotiabank is able to replicate leaders along the likes of Hinkson remains to be seen.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
St. Lucia Ltd.
Scotia Bank on
Comprehensive Security From a Single Source
GUARD SERVICES Armed, Unarmed & K-9
PATROL SERVICES CASH-in-TRANSIT SERVICES ALARM MONITORING & RESPONSE SERVICES COURIER SERVICES Transporting of Valuables
Years of Servi ce & Excellence
ATM MAINTENANCE & SERVICING DEPOSIT PROCESSING
GUARDSMAN (SAINT LUCIA) LTD. Unit 15, Colony House, John Compton Highway, Castries, Saint Lucia Tel: 1(758) 451-9911/3 • Fax: 1(758) 451-9914 Email: email@example.com www.guardsmangroup.com
J.E. BERGASSE & COMPANY LTD. JEB Bldg., Vide Bouteille, P. O. Box 102, Castries, Saint Lucia Tel: (758) 456-6500 | Fax: (758)451-9226 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.jebergasse.com Supporting you... with all your business needs!
•• • • •• • •• •• • •• • •• • • •• •• •• • • • • • • • •• •• • ••• •• • • • • •• •• • • •• • • • • • •• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Performance Tyres Balancing • Rotation • Alignment Repairs • Replacement
Don’t look any futher, the TYRE shop at Northwest has just what you’re looking for and just what you need.
We now offer Express Lube Service: Oil Change • Oil Filter Change • 15 Point Inspection No Appointment Needed • Courteous Staff • Skilled Technicians Quick, Easy and Affordable • Air Conditioned Lounge • FREE WiFi Mon-Fri; 8 am to 4:30 pm • Saturday: 9 am to 12:30 pm Box 946, Castries Tel: (758) 452-1379 • Fax: (758) 453-1331 Web: www.northwestslu.com • Email: email@example.com BusinessFocus May / Jun |
Tenderoni Foods Inc. appoints M a r ke t i n g Executive. St.Lucian professional, Juelle Cadette has been appointed M a r ke t i n g Executive of Tenderoni Foods Inc., the Eastern Caribbean’s leading producer of pasta products and convenience foods. Juelle brings to Tenderoni a wealth of experience in social media strategies, communications and event management, media production, website development and market research. A former TV presenter with a solid track record of sales in the hospitality sector, Juelle will work collaboratively with company chairman, Rudy Gurley, to oversee the development and execution of Tenderoni's marketing strategies. She is specifically tasked with applying creativity and innovation in developing marketing campaigns with a social focus to optimize engagement, amplify reach, and contribute to key marketing and business goals.
Lisa Agard, the former VicePresident of Mobile and Legal at Trinidad &Tobago’s telecoms provider TSTT, has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Guardian Media Ltd (GML), effective May 1. Agard, replaces Gabriel Faria, who was the company’s Managing Director for five years and resigned at the end of this month. GML publishes the Trinidad Guardian newspaper and operates TV station CNC3 and a number of radio stations. It is also a member of the Ansa McAl Group. Contacted about her appointment, Agard said: BusinessFocus May / Jun
“I am delighted to join the Guardian Media group as CEO. I look forward to working with the dedicated and professional staff across the full spectrum of print, TV, and radio, so that together we continue to deliver a high quality product to the people of Trinidad and Tobago. “We recognise the significant role that the media plays in the development of any democratic society and it is my intention to uphold the highest traditions of the ‘Fourth Estate’ to inform, be open, transparent and accountable in the relentless pursuit of truth.” GML Chairman Grenfell Kissoon made the official announcement in a statement to staff members. “Mr Faria will be taking up the position of Managing Director of Carib Brewery Ltd, which is a subsidiary of ANSA McAL Ltd,” the release said. Agard, an attorney, holds a postgraduate degree in Law from the London School of Economics. She has had executive management training from the Wharton School of Business and Columbia University, USA, and from INSEAD, France.
A British airline executive has been handed the reins of LIAT airlines, a company statement said. David Evans has been named Chief Executive Officer of LIAT. Effective 22nd April 2014. Evans assumes the Chief Executive responsibilities from Mrs. Julie Reifer-Jones, who has been Acting CEO since the resignation of Captain Ian Brunton in September 2013. Evans, according to LIAT, has more than 35 years of experience in senior roles within the aviation industry. Between 1975 and 1997, he served as Airport Manager, Country Manager and Area Manager with British Airways in East Africa, Saudi Arabia, France, Philippines, China, Denmark and the United States. In this latter role, he held responsibility for the airline’s activities in Latin America and the Caribbean.
In 1997, he became Managing Director, British Airways Regional, a position held until 2001 when he became Managing Director, British Airways CitiExpress and BA Connect, serving in that capacity for six years. He joined the United Nations UNDP program in 2007 and under their auspices served as Chief Operating Officer of Zambian Airways in 2007. In 2009 he joined Kuwait start-up airline Wataniya Airways as Chief Commercial Officer. Since then he has provided strategic and commercial consultancy services to Egypt’s Nile Air and other organizations in the Middle East.
The Board of Directors of the Barbados T o u r i s m Authority has announced that Petra Roach, Vice President of Marketing and Sales, UK and Fellow of the Institute of Travel & Tourism, will assume the role of Interim President and CEO (Ag.) as of May 2. Over the past 12 years, Roach has been a driving force for the Barbados Tourism Authority in the UK market, developing key campaigns including the British Airways Football Legends Invitational Tournament and the Top Gear Festival Barbados, as well as pushing for the ratifying of Britain’s Air Passenger Duty, which was reformed earlier this year, the Authority said in a release. Roach is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, and sits on the Boards of the Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship, the Sport for Life charity, and the Caribbean Tourism Organisation, UK. Chairman Adrian Elcock stated, “Ms. Roach has been instrumental in delivering exceptional results in our main source market, the UK, for the past twelve years. Known for her passion for Barbados and her innovative, strategic approach to marketing the destination, Ms Roach’s tireless work has led to the establishment of strong relationships across Europe, increased exposure for Barbados, and to several industry awards for the Authority...”
events 2014 CSA Miami Conference May 12 - 14, 2014, Miami Florida The CSA is hosting this year’s conference in collaboration with the Port of Miami at the Marriott Biscayne Bay. Shipping industry executives from the Caribbean, Latin America, North America and Europe will meet to discuss key issues affecting the industry. For further info: www.caribbeanshipping.org
CEOs and Corporate Communications Symposium May 18 - 21, 2014, St. Thomas, USVI This event provides CEOs with an opportunity to further examine means to foster deeper integration amongst members, analyzing the benefits of sharing knowledge shared resources, and the collective strengthen of their bargaining power. It also provides a forum for networking with associate vendor companies. For further info: www.carilec.com
2014 Caribbean Insurance Conference Today's Challenges, Tomorrow's Opportunities 1 – 3 June, 2014 Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino and the Curacao Hilton, Piscadera Bay, Curacao Attendees include senior level executives; administration executives; heads of marketing, distribution, and information technology; along with top regional producers. The 2014 Caribbean Insurance Conference will feature a mix of general sessions, panel discussions and excellent networking opportunities. For more information on the 2014 conference, please visit the official conference website at: http://iac-caribbean.com/about-the-cic/
Caribbean Fashion Week 11th – 16th June 2014 – National Indoor Sports Centre, Kingston, Jamaica Established by Pulse Investments Ltd. in 2001, Caribbean Fashion Week is the region’s largest, best produced, most recognized and internationally respected fashion event. The event features the Caribbean’s best designers, world famous supermodels & celebrities, important fashion press from around the world as well as local, regional and international fashion buyers. For further info: www.caribbeanfashionweek.com
Trade & Investment Convention (TIC) July 2 - 5, 2014 • Centre of Excellence, Macoya, Trinidad Hosted by the Trinidad & Tobago Manufacture’s Association (TTMA), the Trade and Investment Convention is the region’s biggest business-to-business event, bringing together manufacturers, service providers, exporters, buyers, distributors, wholesalers and investors at a unique forum. For further info: www.tic-tt.com
Taste of the Caribbean & Trade Show, Seminar June 28 – July 2, 2014 – Hyatt Regency, Miami Organised by the CHTA, this Caribbean food and beverage event and competition is not to be missed. Use the opportunity to network, polish professional skills and cheer on colleagues in competition, before a large audience of industry peers and consumer culinary enthusiasts. The event also provides education and inspiration through seminars, workshops, tastings and demonstrations, created to enhance performance, style and profitability in food and beverage operations. For further info: www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com BusinessFocus May / Jun |
NEW COMPANY REGISTRATIONS COMPANY
NATURE OF BUSINESS
Sidari Holdings Ltd.
Property Holding Company
David Wayne Brathwaite Nadine Corinne Brathwaite
INTEL Networks Ltd.
Communications & Networking
LMP Insurance Brokerage Company Ltd.
To Provide Insurance Services
Laurencia Mertle Parsad
Lily Homes Inc.
Building of Homes
Barnabas Errol Calderon Ethelyn Veronica Calderon
Home Automation( Alarm System, etc., John Edwin Solar Control Systems, Electrical Controls- Patrick Freeman Processing and designing for ( Industrial, Oswald Freeman Commercial, Residential)
Green Dot St.Lucia Ltd.
Telecommunications Service Provider, Specifically Subscription TV Series and ISP Services
Ketan Sukha Patel Ahmad Muhammad Khaleelullah
RS Surveying Solutions Inc.
Quantity and Valuation Surveying
Richard Samy Dana Samy
Buisness Solution for China (BSF CHINA )Inc.
Business Advisory Services
Ava Marius Solange Stanislas
Pigeon Island Development Ltd.
Sutel Development Inc.
Real Estate Investing
Cletus Roanne Leon
SKARP Distribution Inc.
Audio Visual Production
Kirby Joseâ€™ St.Clair
Sea Gate Estates Ltd.
Real Estate , Property Management
Sunny Views Ltd
Property Holding Company
Jared Slosberg Kim Slosberg
Roland Sturm Francine Matthews
Restaurant and Catering Services
Patricia Aquing Alicia Juliette Aquing Yvan Anton Aquing Ina Maryanne Archibald
Beyond Horizon Tours Inc.
Water Taxi, Diving & Snorkeling, Fishing, Sunset Cruise
Feds Security (St.Lucia) Ltd.
Indian Heritage Association (St Lucia) Ltd.
Cultural and Fraternal Organization
Keith Aldington Collingwood Compton Ellis Nathaniel Rupert Gajadhar Herob B Morris
P. Tech Services Ltd.
Retail and Distribution of Scales and Generators
Marauder Holdings Ltd.
Islander St.Lucia Inc.
Transfers & Tours
Elma Kershama Phillip Janus Gyan
Accounts, Project Management and IT Training.
BusinessFocus May / Jun
DEDICATED INTERNET ACCESS (DIA) Reliable, high quality internet connectivity for your business
Internet access and its applications is serious business, whether you are using professional internet access or conducting transactions over the internet. If you need absolute, guaranteed reliability and security, a Dedicated Internet Access (DIA) is the right choice for your business. You’ll get a fully dedicated connection, over an unshared and uncontended line, directly into the Digicel Business network. The Digicel Business network meets the most stringent corporate security requirements for link encryption, information integrity and confidentiality, ensuring that your information is always protected. Digicel Business management of the Wide Area Network (WAN) and Global Internet Peering (GIP) provides enterprises with maximum control over service resilience and quality, translating directly into a commercial advantage. Our engineering and operational experience has led to a consistent and proven record of delivery of carrier grade reliability and performance that is assured through our Service Level Agreement (SLA). Why Digicel Dedicated Internet Access?
Flexibility & Reliability
DIA is delivered seamlessly on Digicel’s Backbone Network to your premise(s) Dedicated connectivity with high availability and low latency. Easily upgradable to higher speeds
Digicel Business architecture can provide fully diverse paths for a fully redundant ‘Always on’ Service DIA is delivered via a fully resilient internet backbone with best in class IP peering
Digicel’s DIA offers dedicated, guaranteed bandwidth for highpriority business applications
The dedicated link to your premises is using secure encryption mechanism ensuring a secure transport at all times World-class network quality and reliability supported by a proven pedigree of service with the world's premier carriers Leading Service Level Agreements (SLA’s) guaranteeing delivery and service availability
Scotiabank St. Lucia Celebrating 50 years of Service